How the book is organized

The various sections of the book are as follows.

A: Coloniality, globalization, and mental health

This section starts with re-configuring the construct of culture and race to anchor the book and then offers a comprehensive critique of the Eurocentric psychologies of the West; its roots in colonialism; its limitations; and its race and gender bias/based practices. Under the whiteness dominance, talking about race and culture and its impact on mental health of racialized people are also discussed within the white space and colonial languages. The failure of Western European mental health to meet the needs of all patients in a multicultural society is explored. Drawn from historical, geopolitical and/or post-colonial perspectives, the chapters attempt to illustrate how the Eurocentric values are marked as a norm and become dominant yet implicit in current global mental health practices. Each chapter then explores ways to de-centralize the Eurocentric values and to end epistemic injustice in mental health. Shifting and globalizing the mental health knowledge away from Eurocentric views will position anti-colonial practice into the center and shine a light for future research and practice that are grounded in indigenous cultural knowing and healing in mental health.

B: Race and culture in mental health practices

The chapters in Part B discuss theories, research, and practice concerning the roles of cultural, ethnic, and racial diversity in relation to specific mental health disciplines and related professions. Organized around the development of cultural competence in clinical practice, each chapter attempts to draw on research and professional expertise to highlight important considerations regarding cultural differences, social identities and their associated strengths and risk factors, and their relationships to theory and practice in each discipline. These are illustrated through the use of two or three short case vignettes per chapter. The chapter in this section also offer recommendations for best practice with culture and discourse, highlighting unique theoretical concerns and pertinent differences in practice with respect to other mental health professions.

C: Culture and multiple identities in mental health

This part focus on specific identities and their relationship with mental health. The specific ways in which illness and psychological distress are represented and made meaning of through the lenses of multiple identities are discussed. Each chapter also make connections between the presenting issues and the complex ways in which diversity as a socio-cultural and psychological paradigm enters the clinical space; and, offer two or three short case vignettes to illustrate the ideas and discussion of how culture intersects with diversity and multiple socio-cultural identities and mental health.

D: Religion and healing in mental health

The chapters in this section explore the beliefs, practices, and experiences of specific religious groups and their relationship with mental health.The ways in which illness, psychological distress, and healing are represented and understood through the lenses of each religion are discussed, with consideration for within-group diversity, intersectionahty and multiple ways of knowing. Short case vignettes are interweaved onto the chapter to illustrate the beliefs, values, practices, and experiences of each religious group as they enter the clinical space. The unique challenges and complexities of each religions embeddedness in contemporary socio-cultural landscapes are discussed in light of their implications for mental health.

E: Special populations and culture in mental health

In Part E, the chapters discuss marginalized populations and their unique features and challenges in mental health. The focus is on how race, culture and ethnicity contribute to shaping mental health practices with some of these special populations. Some of the chapters also explore how human mobility and displacement from home to host nations provide a site where voluntary or forced migrants revisit representations and meanings of mental health and illness. As in the rest of the book chapters in this section also offer short case vignettes to illustrate how each special population negotiates presenting issues and struggles to make changes within their sociocultural contexts.

F: Culture and mental health in a global context

These chapters explore the mental health practices of several countries. The chapters discuss the demographic context, a brief history and philosophy of mental health; how illness is conceptualized culturally in different country contexts, and the kinds of mental health care that is practiced in each country. The chapters also offer short case vignettes to illustrate the relationship between culture and mental health.

G: Indigenous and traditional healing in mental health

The final group of chapters discuss indigenous, cultural and traditional healing as they are practiced in contemporary mental health settings. Chapters explore traditional healing: its history, philosophy and its contemporary evolution. Some of the chapters also discuss the training of healers, their accreditation, licensure, and certification and the ways in which indigenous healing is practiced.


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