cultural bound syndromes

This discussion thread focuses on exploring cultural bound syndromes (CBS) through a cross-cultural perspective. Although we will not be discussing all of the CBS that are acknowledged globally, this discussion thread will give us a general overview of what is both believed and practiced globally.

To achieve this through an anthropological lens, you will be taking on the role of the cultural anthropologist writing for a blog series for National Geographic on recent medical anthropological work. Thus, the cultural bound syndrome you select (see below) will be your contribution to the blog series.

Your blog should be academically based, including an introduction & conclusion with the content of the body paragraphs being directed towards anthropological lens such as avoiding ethnocentrism or comparing the syndrome to any other cultural group (including your own). Keep in mind that even for the cultural bound syndromes & associated articles that discuss the incorporation of biomedical practices or cultural groups seeking treatment in a Western health care system, your focus is on the CBS as it relates to the cultural group.

Specific Steps

Step 1

Pick a cultural bound syndrome (CBS) from the list below. The academically credible source associated with the CBS in the list below is required for this online discussion.

Step 2

Using the article associated with the CBS that you selected, response to the following prompts to help focus & construct your initial posting. REMEMBER: Your initial posting should not be a bullet point listing of your responses to these prompts. Rather, the content related to the prompts must be included in the initial posting

Prompt A: Summary

Summary of the CBS in your own words and through a cultural anthropological lens. Discuss the main components of the CBS but avoid constructing a summary that feels like a listing of information. Brief, but cohesive summary.

Prompt B: Analysis through a Cultural Anthropological Lens

Analyze the article with respect to the CBS you have selected. The article for your CBS will go beyond a basic description of the CBS to examine it in the context of the cultural group or a specific event, etc. For the analysis part of the initial posting, focus on the significant components of the CBS to other elements of culture that are examined in the article.

To achieve a strong analysis, you’ll need to read the article with purpose of identifying interconnections between the CBS & aspects of culture. The analysis must be in your own words.

Other Criteria

  • Direct quotes are not permitted.
  • I highly recommend avoiding other sources aside from your textbook and the provided article. On that note, the provided article is required for this discussion thread.
  • Any indication of ethnocentrism or comparison to another cultural group in the initial posting will result in a zero for the initial posting component of OD#4. Keep in mind that even for the cultural bound syndromes & associated articles that discuss the incorporation of biomedical practices or cultural groups seeking treatment in a Western health care system, your focus is on the CBS as it relates to the cultural group in question not a comparison between systems / beliefs/ treatments.

Cultural Bound Syndromes & Sources

Cultural Bound Syndrome Required Source
Anorexia Becker et al — Eating behaviors and attitudes following prolonged exposure to television among ethnic Fijian adolescent girls
Grisi Siknis Wedel — Bridging the Gap between Western and Indigenous Medicine in Eastern Nicaragua
Swallowing Frogs Rebhun — Swallowing Frogs: Anger and Illness in Northeast Brazil
Hwabyung Min — Hwabyung in Korea: Culture and Dynamic Analysis
Pibloktoq Higgs — Pibloktoq — A study of a cultural bound syndrome in the circumpolar region
Susto Poss and Jezewski — The role and meaning of Susto in Mexican Americans’ explanatory model of type 2 diabetes
 

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