online resources

Culture and Mind: Psychiatry’s Missing Diagnosis.

Shankar Vedantam, science correspondent for National Public Radio, originally published this three-part series in the Washington Post. In discussion with cultural psychiatrists, along with some critics, he provides an overview of some provocative findings that challenge the standard medical model of mental illness.

Division 45 of the American Psychological Association.

Division 45 of the APA, the Society for the Psychology Study of Ethnic Minority Issues, promotes psychological research on ethnic minorities in the United States. The division coordinates the journal Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology.

Division of Social and Transcultural Psychiatry, McGill University.

This long-established interdisciplinary group provides research, training, and clinical service based on the perspective that culture fundamentally shapes mental health. The division hosts an annual one-month summer training program and conference in Montreal, Quebec. As well, it coordinates the journal Transcultural Psychiatry in association with the Transcultural Psychiatry Section of the World Psychiatric Association.

Film Series: Afflictions.

Anthropologist and filmmaker Robert Lemelson directs this six-film series about mental illness in Indonesia.

Foundation for Psychocultural Research.

A private foundation with academic links to UCLA, this nonprofit organization promotes interdisciplinary research on culture, psychology, psychiatry, and neuroscience. The foundation supports regular conferences along with the FPR-UCLA Center for Culture, Brain, and Development.

International Association for Cross-Cultural Psychology.

The IACCP is the oldest international organization dedicated to the study of cross-cultural psychology. They host bi-annual conferences, coordinate the Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, and have developed the free Online Readings in Psychology and Culture.

New York Times: The Americanization of Mental Illness.

Author and journalist Ethan Watters argues in this NYT Magazine article that the assumption that American mental health norms are universal contributes not just to misunderstandings, but to shaping how distress is experienced and expressed in other cultural contexts. His popular science book Crazy Like Us explores this argument in more detail.

Reducing Health Disparities in Asian American & Pacific Islander Populations.

This training resource includes modules on cultural competence, specific Asian American and Pacific Islander cultural groups, traditional medicine, history taking techniques, adherence, intercultural communication, and epidemiology. Modules include self-assessment quizzes and video clips of interviews with providers and patients. One module, on history taking, excerpts and analyzes material from Anne Fadiman’s The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down.

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