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Crazy Like Us

Condition: BRAND NEW
ISBN: 9781921640643
Author(s): Ethan Watters
Format: Paperback
Year: 2010
Publisher: Scribe Publications
Dimensions: 155 x 24 x 233 (w x l x h)
Pages: 320

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Description:
In Crazy Like Us, Ethan Watters reveals that the most devastating consequence of the spread of American culture has not been golden arches or bomb craters but the bulldozing of the human psyche itself: America is in the process of homogenising the way the world goes mad. America has been the world leader in generating new mental health treatments and modern theories of the human psyche, exporting psychopharmaceuticals packaged with the certainty that its biomedical knowledge will relieve the suffering and stigma of mental illness. It categorises disorders, thereby defining mental illness and health, and then parades these seemingly scientific certainties in front of the world. The blowback from these efforts is just now coming to light: It turns out that America has not only been changing the way the world talks about and treats mental illness - it has been changing the mental illnesses themselves. For millennia, local beliefs in different cultures have shaped the experience of mental illness into endless varieties. Crazy Like Us documents how American interventions have discounted and worked to change those indigenous beliefs, often at a dizzying rate.
Watters travels from China to Tanzania to bring home the unsettling conclusion that as we introduce Americanised ways of treating mental illnesses, we are in fact spreading the diseases. In post-tsunami Sri Lanka, Watters reports on the Western trauma counsellors who, in their rush to help, inadvertently trampled local expressions of gr
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