Global Mental Health Issues: Culture and Psychopathology

Judith K. Bass, William W. Eaton, Sharon Abramowitz and Norman Sartorius

in Public Mental Health

Published in print July 2012 | ISBN: 9780195390445
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199950416 | DOI:
Global Mental Health Issues: Culture and Psychopathology

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This chapter begins with a definition of culture that is useful in exploring the issue of global mental health, followed by a delineation of approaches to clarify the interrelationship of culture and mental health. The chapter then examines current knowledge of mental disorders in low-resource contexts using approaches from anthropology (the culture-bound approach) and epidemiology (the cross-cultural or transnational approach). This is followed by discussion of both social behaviors and functionality, issues associated with mental health that are affected by the culture in which a person lives. What follows is an exploration of risk and resiliency factors, including an examination of the difficulty inherent in differentiating between culture-specific vulnerabilities and vulnerabilities associated more generally with the effects of poverty in a low-resource environment. Finally, the chapter delineates how culture and context can influence the selection and adaptation of behavioral interventions and treatments.

Keywords: mental health; culture; mental disorders; social behaviors; poverty; behavioral intervention; treatment

Chapter.  10014 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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