Honoree Address: Rethinking Taboo & Violent Voices

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Length: 49 minutes

Rachel (Rai) Waddingham

Whilst hearing voices is often a taboo in western cultures, linked with media stereotypes and images of ‘madness’, there are some kinds of voices that are even harder to talk about – ‘taboo voices’.

Taboo Voices may include ones that speak of violent and/or sexual themes - things that a person, and those around them, find very distressing. They can be extremely graphic, sometimes overlapping with violent thoughts, impulses or disturbing visions. This talk draws from Rai’s personal experience of hearing taboo and violent voices, as well as her work with young people and people in prison and the principles of the Hearing Voices Movement. It explores how we can view them as an opportunity for growth and understanding, rather than a risk to be silenced. 

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