Erika Dyck

Headshot of Erika Dyck

Dr. Dyck’s chief interests are in the history of psychiatry, mental health, deinstitutionalization and eugenics. She is the author of Psychedelic Psychiatry which examines the history of LSD experimentation and how it fit within broader trends in the changing orientation of psychiatry during the post-World War II period. Her second book, Facing Eugenics, examines the experiences of patients and families as they confronted eugenics in 20th century Alberta. It traces their experiences through coercive and voluntary sexual sterilization procedures and the legacy of eugenics for influencing our perceptions of reproductive rights, disability and reproductive choice. As part of her CRC objectives, she is currently working on a CIHR-funded project with Megan Davies (York University) called Open Doors/Closed Ranks. This project relies on an interdisciplinary team of researchers who are comparing processes and experiences related to deinstitutionalization or the closure of long-stay mental hospitals in Nova Scotia, Saskatchewan and British Columbia. Some of the results from this project are featured on the Canadian History of Madness website ( As part of a Community University Research Alliance on Living Archives on Eugenics in Western Canada, she has also worked with scholars, students and community members to develop more inclusive resources on the history of disability, reproduction and eugenics in Alberta.