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School of Health Sciences, The University of Nottingham
Arts and the Language of Recovery

In this talk, Professor Crawford will report on a key strand of his £1.5m Creative Practice as Mutual Recovery programme, funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, UK.  In addition to outlining this innovative programme of work and its mixed methodology, Professor Crawford will present findings from the study of the language of art and mental health recovery in policy discourse.


Professor Paul Crawford is the world’s first Professor of Health Humanities and directs both the Centre for Social Futures (Institute of Mental Health) and Nottingham Health Humanities at The University of Nottingham – spearheading research into social and cultural aspects of health care and, in particular, mental health. He is a Fellow of both the Royal Society of Arts and the Academy of Social Sciences, Professorial Fellow of the Institute of Mental Health, and has held Visiting Professorships in Norway, Taiwan, China and Australia. He is Co-Founder of the Health Language Research Group at the University of Nottingham, a member of the senior team of the Faculty of Health Sciences and a Registered Nurse.

Professor Crawford has written over 100 publications including several books: Communicating Care (Nelson Thornes, 1998); Politics and History in William Golding (University of Missouri, 2003); Evidence Based Research (Open University Press, 2003), which was Highly Commended in the BMA Book Competition for 2004; Storytelling in Therapy (Nelson Thornes, 2004); Evidence Based Health Communication (Open University Press, 2006); Communication in Clinical Settings (Nelson Thornes, 2006); Madness in Post-1945 British and American Fiction (Palgrave, 2010) and Health Humanities (Palgrave, 2015). Crawford has written articles for national and regional newspapers and magazines.  His acclaimed novel about mental illness, Nothing Purple, Nothing Black, resulted in various interviews in national media and an option for film by the British film producer, Jack Emery (The Drama House, London/ Florida).  

Professor Crawford has been PI or CI on various prestigious Research Council or major charity grants (The British Academy, AHRC, AHRC/RCUK, ESRC and The Leverhulme Trust). These include PI on a new cross-disciplinary £1.5m large programme grant from AHRC/ RCUK Connected Communities (2013-18) to investigate Creative Practice as Mutual Recovery for Mental Health and Well-Being and a £830,000 large grant from AHRC to investigate the work of Florence Nightingale.  He directs both the AHRC-funded Madness and Literature Network (www.madnessandliterature.org) and International Health Humanities Network (www.healthhumanities.org) which advance the application of arts and humanities to enhance social capital, health and well-being.  He is also International advisor on trans-disciplinary research and health humanities at various institutions worldwide.