The Jurujuba Hospital of Niterói was created in 1953 to be a linchpin of health care for mental illness. Located in the capital of the state of Rio de Janeiro, Jurujuba was initially known for its progressive services, including lobotomy treatments. However, it quickly became a dumping ground for "insane" individuals and other marginalized populations who were abandoned by the police and various state agencies.
In the late 1980s, Brazil's military dictatorship ended, bringing both a new constitution and the beginning of psychiatric reform. As a result, Jurujuba went from a federal hospital to a municipal one. Over time, the hospital was transformed back to its status as a cornerstone of mental treatment, thanks to a community of health care professionals who invested in their patients, practiced empathy, and saw the humanity around them. Today, the exit doors are much wider than the entrance ones, and the walls that trapped the socially marginalized in an alternate universe now resemble a "normal" world.
This work offers an unprecedented perspective of a historical moment in Brazilian psychiatric reform. Others have already shed light on the failures and horrors of the hospital's first three decades, so I propose immersing the reader into the parallel universe of intimately understanding madness. This work takes readers into a place where the madman fits and deconstructs the uninspired answers to give space to new, innovative questions.
Project under development since 2017.