Film screening

Film screening: 'Eminent Monsters' on psychological torture

Date Range
Thu February 13th 2020, 5:30 - 7:30pm
Event Sponsor
Center for Human Rights and International Justice
Building 260, room 113 (Pigott Hall on the main quad)
Read a recap of this event.
Film screening: 'Eminent Monsters' on psychological torture

In the 1950’s the CIA and Canada covertly funded Scottish-born psychiatrist Dr. Ewen Cameron to embark on the darkest program of psychological experimentation in modern history. Subjecting his "patients" to sensory deprivation, forced comas, LSD injections and extreme physical and mental torture, Cameron’s techniques have since been used in 27 countries around the world. With testimony from senior American psychologists, military personnel and key whistleblowers, director Stephen Bennett shines fresh light upon claims of collusion between doctors and the state and lays bare the legacy of pain left behind by Cameron. From the establishment of a human torture laboratory in Montreal and the humiliation and terror of Guantanamo, to the "Hooded Men" of Belfast seeking justice and reparation at the European Court of Human Rights, Eminent Monsters is an urgent call to the international community to right the wrongs of the past and protect us from a dangerous future.

After the film, a panel of experts will discuss the ramifications of these practices from mental health, legal, and rights-based perspectives. The panel, moderated by Dr. Adam Kochanski, will feature:

Dr. Harvey M. Weinstein, Senior Research Fellow at UC-Berkeley Law School's Human Rights Center, and retired Clinical Professor in the UC-Berkeley School of Public Health. From 1998 to 2005, Dr. Weinstein was Associate Director of UC-Berkeley's Human Rights Center, where he directed the Forced Migration and Health Project. He authored a book on U.S. experimentation on unwitting human subjects entitled Psychiatry and the CIA: Victims of Mind Control (1990).

Dr. Daniel Mason, Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Stanford, with research interests in the subjective experience of mental illness, the use of the humanities in treatment, and the influence of literature, history, and culture on modern medical practice. Mason is the author of The Piano Tuner, A Far Country, Death of the Pugilist, and The Winter Soldier.

Beth Van Schaack, the Leah Kaplan Visiting Professor in Human Rights at Stanford Law School and Faculty Fellow at the Center for Human Rights and International Justice. She previously served as deputy to the ambassador-at-large for War Crimes Issues in the Office of Global Criminal Justice of the U.S. Department of State and a visiting scholar at the Center for International Security & Cooperation at Stanford University.

Dr. Adam Kochanski, Postdoctoral Fellow at McGill University’s Centre for International Peace and Security Studies and research fellow at Stanford University’s Center for Human Rights and International Justice. He holds a PhD in political studies from the University of Ottawa. His research focuses on transitional justice, peacebuilding, and international norms relating to human rights accountability and the protection of civilians.

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