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Maudsley Debates

Podcasts & Videos 51st - 70th

51st Maudsley Dabate: Whatever happened to the stiff upper lip?

November 2014

'The 51st Maudsley Debate piqued great interest – and a packed-out auditorium - with its title: “Whatever happened to the stiff upper lip?: This House Believes that Emotional Restraint is a Healthy Response to Adversity.” Chaired impeccably by the President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, Professor Sir Simon Wessely, the debate was opened by the redoubtable Jules Evans, Policy Director for the Centre of the Emotions and mentor to Saracens Rugby Club, who argued that whilst a ‘bad’ stiff upper lip could be damaging, stoic notions of a ‘good’ stiff upper lip were the basis of a healthy life. Opposing was the eminent feminist, writer and analyst Susie Orbach, who memorably advocated for emotional expression and seemed to win the audience over. However, Professor of Education Kathryn Ecclestone brought a startling and fresh insight into the potential perils of excessive therapeutic intervention in school. Wrapping up the debate was an impassioned and moving rhetorical flourish from Sarah Wheeler of the Dragon Café/Mental Fight Club, culminating in a recital of William Blake. By now passions were high, but the Chair kept his and the speakers’ hair on, by and large. In the end, a pre-debate majority of the audience opposed the motion (for 63, against 122), and the debate swayed some members in support of the motion – but not enough: the final count was 81 for, and 113 against. This house, in the final analysis, believes that emotional restraint is not a healthy response to adversity.'

Dr Benjamin Robinson, Debate Organiser 


52nd Maudsley Dabate: More harm than good?

May 2015

The house believes that the long-term use of psychiatric medications is causing more harm than good.


Professor Til Wykes, Professor of Clinical Psychology and Rehabilitation; Vice-Dean, Psychology & Systems Sciences Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, King’s College London, UK

For: Professor Sami Timimi, Consultant Child & Adolescent Psychiatrist; Director of Postgraduate Education, NHS Lincolnshire; Visiting Professor of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Lincoln

Professor Peter Gøtzsche, Director, The Nordic Cochrane Centre, Denmark

Against: Professor Allan Young, Professor of Mood Disorders, IoPPN, Mr John Crace, Journalist, The Guardian


53rd Maudsley Debate: To ban or not to ban smoking in psychiatric hospitals?

11 November 2015

This house believes that smoking should be banned in psychiatric hospitals.

Chair: Professor Anthony Cleare

For: Professor Sir Simon Wessely, president of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, Ms Deborah Arnott, CEO of ASH (Action on Smoking and Health)

Against: Mr Christopher Snowdon, author and freelance journalist @Sectioned_, service user and (micro)blogger

Livestream - King's YouTube Channel

You can watch the Debate live at :

54th Maudsley Debate: This House believes that NICE guideline "CG178 Psychosis and Schizophrenia in Adults" is unbiased and evidence based

MD54 Small banner

11 May 2016

This House believes that NICE guideline "CG178 Psychosis and Schizophrenia in Adults" is unbiased and evidence based 

Chair: Prof Sarah Byford


Prof Sonia Johnson & Prof Steve Pilling


Dr Mark Taylor & Prof Clive Adams

Livestream - King's YouTube Channel 

You can watch the Debate live at : 

55th Maudsley Debate: Who needs Athena Swan?

55th MD poster - small

12th October 2016

 “Who needs Athena Swan?  This house believes that UK universities already offer equal opportunities for all”. 


- Dr Joanna Williams, Senior Lecturer in Higher Education, University of Kent, author of “Academic Freedom in an age of Conformity"

- Belinda Brown, Co-founder of the Gender Equity Network, UCL


- Prof Clare Gerada MBE, Former Chair, Royal College of General Practitioners

- Femi Otitojou, Founder and Training Director, Challenge Consultancy


- Shubulade Smith, Consultant Psychiatrist, SLAM and Clinical Senior Lecturer, IoPPN

55th Maudsley Debate is available on King's College YouTube Channel:

55th Maudsley Debate Video


56th Maudsley Debate: Mental Health Act

Mental Health Act

22nd November 2017

‘This house believes that fundamental reform of the Mental Health Act is required to reduce discrimination and unnecessary detention’


Rt Hon Norman Lamb MP

Professor George Szmukler


Professor Scott Weich

Professor Annie Bartlett


Professor Anthony David

56th Maudsley Debate is available on King's College YouTube Channel:

56th Maudsley Debate Video



57th Maudsley Debate: ECT

ECT Debate

19th September 2018

‘This house believes that electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) has no place in modern medicine’


Professor John Read

Dr Susan Cunliffe


Professor Declan McLoughlin

Dr Sameer Jauhar


Professor Khalida Ismail

57th Maudsley Debate is available on King's College YouTube Channel:

57th Maudsley Debate Video

58th Maudsley Debate: PTSD

ptsd - thumb

4th July 2019

"This house believes that PTSD has become overdiagnosed in western society”


Dr Andrew Johns

Dr Sharon Stevelink 


Dr Stephanie Lewis

Dr Gerard Drennan 


Professor Sir Simon Wessely

58th Maudsley Debate is available on King's College YouTube Channel:

58th Maudsley Debate


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