Mental Health Across Cultures Discussion




“What is madness? To have erroneous perceptions and to reason correctly from them” VOLTAIRE (1694–1778)—FRENCH PHILOSOPHER

BB 7: Mental Health Across Cultures

TED Description: Nearly 450 million people are affected by mental illness worldwide. In wealthy nations, just half receive appropriate care, but in developing countries, close to 90 percent go untreated because psychiatrists are in such short supply. Vikram Patel outlines a highly promising approach — training members of communities to give mental health interventions, empowering ordinary people to care for others.


Write a 500 blog exploring various issues in cross-cultural mental illness assessment, diagnoses, treatment, and prevention based on the chapter reading and in connection with the TED Talk. Use the following structure: intro, focus, dilemma, solution, conclusion/future direction.

The 21st century has brought more progress and wealth into the life of people than any other century. Many people throughout the world leave their small villages and communities to seek better opportunities in big cities, where there are better living standards, infrastructure, as well as more prospects for education and career advancement. Such social transformations bring about complex lifestyles with elevated stress due to competitive living and working environments, and some have a harder time adjusting to such challenges. How do various ethnic communities express culture-bound syndromes to certain mental illnesses? How would they try to deal with their mental challenges? Compare and discuss various ethnic groups and provide examples from the textbook chapter. (For example, in the West therapists use behavior or cognitive therapy as treatment. Do you think these therapy approaches work for collectivist cultures or ethnic communities, such as Native Americans, African Americans, Chinese immigrants, Arab immigrants, etc.? Why or why not? What might be effective approaches?)

Pose a critical question for further exploration. Do not forget to respond to two peer-questions!

Self-progress: How many BBs have you completed? If this is your last one, which one was your favorite discussion topic? If this is not your last one, which ones will be next?


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