1st Edition

Cultural Diversity, Mental Health and Psychiatry The Struggle Against Racism

By Dr Suman Fernando, Suman Fernando Copyright 2004

    'Black and minority ethnic communities lack confidence in mental health services', according to the National Service Framework for Mental Health published by the Department of Health in 1999.

    Cultural Diversity, Mental Health and Psychiatry examines how and why this situation has come about, and makes specific practical, often surprising, suggestions for changing the status quo.

    In his latest and most critical analysis, Suman Fernando reflects on the current situation in light of his own personal experience, academic research and anecdotal reports. He weaves together themes of immense importance for the future of psychiatry and mental health services in a multi-cultural setting, exploring:

    * the nature of racism and its permeation into mental health services
    * the inside story of the struggle against racism in statutory and voluntary sectors of the mental health system
    * the history of psychiatry and the role of spirituality, holistic thinking, psychotherapy and Asian traditions of medicine.

    Trainees, practitioners, and managers of mental health services will profit from the practical application of Fernando's latest ideas, and students and academics will benefit from his theoretical guidance.

    Part 1: Background. Racism and cultural diversity. Responding to racism, addressing culture. Part 2: Underlying themes. Psychiatry and mental health from a transcultural perspective. Psychiatric stigma and racism. Part 3: Changing practice. Moving forward. Chapter 6.Future prospects. Summary


    Suman Fernando has been a consultant psychiatrist for over twenty years. He has written and lectured widely on mental health issues. He is Honorary Professor to the Department of Applied Social Sciences at London Metropolitain University.

    "Fernando's book should be compulsory if we are genuinely committed to providing mental health services that are free from racism." - Frank Keating, Mental Health Today, March 2004

    "This well-written book by an accepted original thinker and expert in the field of transcultural psychiatry adds considerably to the current debate about the links between mental health, psychiatry, cultural diversity and racism... this carefully crafted text is highly recommended for all psychiatrists... there is no doubt that this book is an important addition to the ongoing work related to transcultural psychiatry." - Deenesh Khoosal, Consultant Psychiatrist, British Journal of Psychiatry

    "...this is an extremely important book, which all mental health practitioners should read..." – Dr Simon Clarke, Psychotherapy and Politics International, Iss 3, 2005