1. CULTURAL PSYCHIATRY
Cultural psychiatry is a special field of psychiatry. It is primarily concerned with the cultural aspects of human behavior, mental health, psychopathology, and treatment (APA, 1969). Culture refers to the unique behavior and lifestyle shared by a group pf people, and includes customs, habits, beliefs and values that shape emotions, behavior and life pattern.
Within the framework of bio-psycho-sociocultural approaches in psychiatry, cultural psychiatry is mainly focused on sociocultural aspects. At the clinical level, cultural psychiatry aims to promote culturally competent mental health care for patients of diverse ethnic or cultural backgrounds. This includes culturally relevant assessment and understanding of psychopathologies and psychological problems and culturally appropriate care and treatment.
In terms of research, cultural psychiatry is interested in how ethnic or cultural factors may influence human behavior and psychopathology, as well as the art of healing. On a theoretical level, cultural psychiatry aims to expand our knowledge of human behavior and mental problems transculturally to facilitate the developments of more universally applicable and cross-culturally valid theories. From actual perspectives the scope of cultural psychiatry covers the following areas:
a. Studying cultural perspectives of human behavior.
b. Investigating mental stress and illness behavior.
c. Examining psychopathology.
d. Addressing clinical practice.
from Tseng, Wen-Shing. (2003). Clinicians guide to cultural psychiatry. London, New York : Academic press: introduction.