Culture, Illness and Healing

Cultural Conceptions of Mental Health and Therapy

Authors: Marsella, Anthony J., White, G.

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About this book

Within the past two decades, there has been an increased interest in the study of culture and mental health relationships. This interest has extended across many academic and professional disciplines, including anthropology, psychology, sociology, psychiatry, public health and social work, and has resulted in many books and scientific papers emphasizing the role of sociocultural factors in the etiology, epidemiology, manifestation and treatment of mental disorders. It is now evident that sociocultural variables are inextricably linked to all aspects of both normal and abnormal human behavior. But, in spite of the massive accumulation of data regarding culture and mental health relationships, sociocultural factors have still not been incorporated into existing biological and psychological perspectives on mental disorder and therapy. Psychiatry, the Western medical specialty concerned with mental disorders, has for the most part continued to ignore socio-cultural factors in its theoretical and applied approaches to the problem. The major reason for this is psychiatry's continued commitment to a disease conception of mental disorder which assumes that mental disorders are largely biologically-caused illnesses which are universally represented in etiology and manifestation. Within this perspective, mental disorders are regarded as caused by universal processes which lead to discrete and recognizable symptoms regardless of the culture in which they occur. However, this perspective is now the subject of growing criticism and debate.

Reviews

`This volume represents a major contribution to the field of culture and mental health. While the field lacks a unified paradigm for its diverse areas of inquiry, it is united in its endeavor to question the relevance of the reductionistic biomedical `disease model'. The evidence presented here supporting the role of cultural factors in the etiology, expression, course, and outcome of mental disorders is overwhelming. At the same time, the work eludicates many conceptual and methodological issues that remain unresolved.'
Medical Anthropology Quarterly, 1:1 (1987)
`Each section is in itself a worthy volume on its own. The four sections together combine to give the breadth and depth of conceptions to satisfy one's most rigorous intellectual, theoretical and clinical demands. ... This is a book that is a must on the reading list of every worker in the field of culture and mental health - psychiatrists, psychologists, anthropologists, social workers and serious scholars who have an interest in the study of the human mind and the human spirit in cultural context. The editors and authors are to be congratulated on such a marvellously rich volume.'
Journal of Intercultural Studies, 6:2

Table of contents (9 chapter)

  • Introduction: Cultural Conceptions in Mental Health Research and Practice

    Geoffrey M. White, Anthony J. Marsella

    Pages 3-38

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  • The Ethnographic Study of Cultural Knowledge of “Mental Disorder”

    Geoffrey M. White

    Pages 69-95

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  • Does the Concept of the Person Vary Cross-Culturally?

    Richard A. Shweder, Edmund J. Bourne

    Pages 97-137

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  • Cultural Definitions, Behavior and the Person in American Psychiatry

    Atwood D. Gaines

    Pages 167-192

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  • Popular Conceptions of Mental Health in Japan

    Margaret Lock

    Pages 215-233

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Buy this book

eBook $239.00 net
( price for USA )
  • ISBN 978-94-010-9220-3
  • digitally watermarked, no DRM
  • included format: PDF
  • eBooks can be used on all Reading Devices
Softcover $299.00 net
( price for USA )
  • ISBN 978-90-277-1757-3
  • free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Cultural Conceptions of Mental Health and Therapy
Series Title
Culture, Illness and Healing
Series Volume
4
Copyright
1982
Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Copyright Holder
D. Reidel Publishing Company, Dordrecht, Holland
eBook ISBN
978-94-010-9220-3
DOI
10.1007/978-94-010-9220-3
Softcover ISBN
978-90-277-1757-3
Edition Number
1
Topics