Mental Health Worldwide: Culture, Globalization and Development

Author(s) : Suman Fernando

Mental Health Worldwide: Culture, Globalization and Development

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Mental Health Worldwide offers a perceptive critique of the universalized model of psychiatry and its apparent exportation from the West to the developing world. The foundational concepts of the dominant models in psychiatry, however, are understood very differently in non-western cultural traditions. Whilst there is a worldwide need to emphasize mental health in the context of public health, the 'traditional psychiatric' model, with its focus on medicalization and drug-based 'cures', may not always be appropriate, and its approaches should not be employed unquestioningly. Here, Suman Fernando takes a much-needed critical look at the field of psychiatry in an international context, proposing suggestions for advancing mental health and wellbeing in low and middle income countries in a way that is ethical, sustainable and culturally sensitive. These lessons can also be applied to developing service provision in the West in our increasingly globalized world.

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