Prisoners or Patients? Criminal Insanity in Victorian Scotland
General Register House, Matheson Dome
https://www.nrscotland.gov.uk/research/learning/exhibitions – 30 August 2019, 10.00-16.30
The stories of prisoner-patients held in the Criminal Lunatic Department in Perth are revealed in this partnership exhibition. Diving into the rich archival sources held within the National Records of Scotland (NRS), guest curator Professor Rab Houston of the University of St Andrews, examines the personal histories of crime, recovery and release recorded in the archives.
High Court of Justiciary records reveal the details of the prisoner-patient’s crime in their own words, while the notes of doctors and prison officials detail how they tried to help men and women who were occasionally dangerous, often vulnerable, but always severely disturbed.
For centuries mental illness and impairment have touched the lives of people regardless of background, sex or circumstance. This exhibition tells their story and aims to raise awareness of continuing mental health issues, inside and outside of prisons today.
Fringe Festival Exhibition – ‘Prisoners or Patients? Criminal Insanity in Victorian Scotland’