Rachel Cooper, PhD – Long Bio

Rachel Cooper‘s major research interests lie within the philosophy of science and medicine, especially philosophy of psychiatry. Her research focuses on conceptual problems around psychiatric classification, and on understanding concepts of disorder and health. Her most recent book, Diagnosing the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (Karnac, 2014), examines issues with the DSM-5, the latest edition of the classification of mental disorders published by the American Psychiatric Association. Her earlier monograph, Classifying Madness (Springer, 2005), also concerns philosophical problems with psychiatric classification. Dr. Cooper is very interested in problems having to do with the concept of disorder, and is trying to work out what makes a condition count as a disorder as opposed to a moral failing or normal variation. She has already written widely on this problem, and hopes to finish off a book on the issue in the next couple of years. Another of her major publications is Psychiatry and the Philosophy of Science (2007, Acumen), which examines the ways in which psychiatric science is both like and unlike more established sciences.