Pharmaceuticals Anonymous

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

How the west won mental health thinking

"The way the west reacts to natural disasters such as the tsunami of 2004 and latterly the Japanese earthquake – namely by parachuting in counsellors and "trauma experts" into disaster zones to offer psychological first aid – is just one highly visible illustration of the growing dominance of western mental health orthodoxy, Watters argues. What if a group of shamans had turned up in Manhattan knocking on doors in the wake of 9/11 offering to counsel traumatised survivors, he asks. Is that the cultural equivalent to dispatching British and American counsellors who "don't speak the language and don't understand the culture" they are trying to help?"