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Institute of Advanced Study

IAS/Grey College Fellows' Public Lecture

Speakers: Professor Marius Romme and Dr Sandra Escher

Date: 19 October 2011

Time: 5.30-6.30pm

Venue: Penthouse Suite, Collingwood College

Title: Accepting and making sense of hearing voices

Prof.  Dr. Marius Romme
In this lecture I will explain:
  • The core concept of the new approach towards hearing voices.
  • The outline of its beginning and development.
  • The main results of our research.
  • The consequence for the traditional psychosis concept. 
Dr. Sandra Escher
Children and youngsters hearing voices

In children as in adults, auditory hallucinations, or hearing voices, is generally seen as a sign of psychopathology. In psychiatry, hearing voices is often interpreted as a symptom of an illness, perhaps a life-long one, which has no relationship to the individual's life history. However, contemporary research challenges these assumptions.

A group of 80 children, both patients and non-patients, were interviewed at baseline and three times at yearly intervals thereafter. The rate of voice discontinuation over the three-year period was 60%. In 85% of children there were trauma or problematic circumstances at the onset of voice hearing, suggesting a relationship between the onset of the voice hearing and life events.