A war over mental health professionalism: Scientology versus psychiatry

Stephen A. Kent, Terra A. Manca

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Articlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Over 60 years ago, founder L. Ron Hubbard began what has become Scientology's greatest battle. Scientology emerged from Dianetics, which Hubbard hoped would replace the psychiatric profession. In this article, we discuss how Scientology attempted to position itself as a rival profession to psychiatry and the consequences of those attempts. Scientology's battle with psychiatry gained some success from the social conditions during which it emerged, but it continues in a time that has seen increasing success with various psychiatric treatments. As such, Scientology's direct influence on the psychiatric profession may be difficult to measure, but its actions have coincided with substantial challenges to psychiatry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-23
Number of pages23
JournalMental Health, Religion and Culture
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan. 2014


  • Scientology
  • mental health
  • professions
  • pseudo-science
  • psychiatry


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