Scrupulosity is a mental illness. This is not determined simply by inclusion in or exclusion from the current DSM. The features that characterize Scrupulosity needn’t be disordered, and this chapter addresses skepticism—eliminativism and social constructionism—about mental illness more generally. Illnesses, according to skeptics about mental illness, require physical markers and a value-free diagnosis. These are not present for Scrupulosity, nor are they present for many mental illnesses. The chapter considers dysfunction and harm as definitive of mental illness. It then examines the DSM-5 definition of mental illness and finds that Scrupulosity fits that definition.
Keywords: mental illness, eliminativism about mental illness, social construction of mental illness, physical illness, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), dysfunction, harm, definitions of mental illness
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