Cultural Factors Psychology

Cultural factors in diagnosis and treatment are highly imperative. This paper includes critical thinking on the perils of using mainstream methodology with non-Western cultures.

Cultural factors have deep roots in the clinical psychology. Cross cultural psychology has now become an inseparable idea in clinical psychology. Culture cannot be avoided in order to make a precise judgment on mental problem. The paper is based upon literature review on various academic articles and books written to cover the significance of culture in clinical psychology. It offers systematic review based upon authentic basis regarding psychological treatment considering the cultural factors involved in diagnosis. Efforts are expected to focus on accurate judgment, suitable therapeutic process and an eventual release of the painful feeling. The capable psychoanalysts must be devoted, and eager to understand the cultural backdrop, past experiences and its correlation with the psychological diagnosis and handling of the case. Also a patient from non-western cultural background must be treated with extreme care while considering his cultural beliefs as important indicators to achieve optimum output; an ultimate relief for the patient. Respecting the consensus developed by historic and contemporary professionals, a psychologist can enhance efficacy of the treatment and avoid the perils of the mainstream methodology in treatment of non-western cultures.

Cultural factors are one of the most significant variables in the field of clinical psychology. A clinician cannot aim for precise diagnosis and appropriate treatment without considering the culture of the patient as a guiding principle, as many of the psychological behaviours are directly influenced by the cultural norms.

The paper presents a review of different cultures and their requirement for the diagnosis of treatment on mental health problems. It will also highlight potential harms of applying mainstream methodologies on a non-western client. A detailed literature review will explain the main aspects of non-western culture and culture related attitude on mental health. While treating the mental disorders, it will be useless if a general method is applied on everyone, without studying the socio cultural background of the client and salient features of the specific culture. We can explain its importance through an example; drinking habit may be a serious issue in a culture and may demand psychotherapy to get rid of it, but it is possible that it is considered as a normal thing in another culture. Also shyness of a female towards the males can be considered as a psychological problem in the western culture, though it may be considered as a normal behaviour in non-western traditions. Any diagnosis cannot be appropriate unless it is seen through the lens of the culture. Every psychological disorder has a deep connection with religious beliefs, ethnic norms, and native environment. An expert clinician has to identify that root first before making a professional judgment on the problem, type of treatment and therapeutic process required, and mannerism of the sessions, and required cultural sensitivity aspects during the therapies. The need of cognitive testing can only be identified after thorough analyses of the cultural factors behind the problem.

Cultural factors in psychological diagnosis and treatment; an overview

 Psychological diagnosis is very much dependent on the symptoms in human behaviour. Talking about the general perception on mental illness or disorder, anything different from a usual behaviour is referred as a psychological disorder. These perceptions are closely related to the culture possessed by the patient and also the interpretation of any behaviour as according to the cultural norms. We can understand this phenomenon by an example of some sort of mania. Mania is almost a common problem found in almost all the cultures, but the clinician must be very careful in diagnosis, as there is a probability of confusing the culture related expression of distress as wrong diagnosis of mania. We can observe cultural diversity in stating the depression, but it may be under diagnosed, usually on initial stage and careful measures are not taken. It is true that somatic characteristics may be identical in all the cultures, yet, it is critical to differentiate physical descriptions of a sentimental situation. Generally ways of expressing depression are different in all the cultures, however, sad mood, unwillingness in enjoying something, nervousness, and feeling energy less are common symptoms of depression. Culture cannot be neglected for any sort of psychiatric treatment like, while classifying depressive disorders, for example, we have to consider both internal factors within the individual and external factors related to the culture of the subject (Cowen P. et al. 2012. p212).

In the discussion, as it follows, various culture factors will be elucidated as they influence psychological diagnosis and treatment in various situations. It is also important to know how the treatment can cause harm instead of healing the suffering if a client from non-western culture is dealt in mainstream methodologies of diagnosis and treatment.

Cultural diversities and mental health

Culture is an inherited asset which travels from generation to generation. This is a factor which has direct influence on all aspects of the lives of human beings. As far as the approach on mental problems is concerned, it varies from person to person, family to family; various ethnic groups, culture to culture and country to country. It has been observed that culture and religion have a strong influence over the mental health of a person, and initiation of mental illness. Also cultural mannerism of responding towards such problems, determines the extent of agreement of the patient for mental sickness treatment and consistency in this regard. It is very important to understand that representation of mental wellbeing service demands cultural sensitivity for improving acceptance and awareness on the use of these services. This will help to reform approach about mental illness, as it is different from the one customary in the west. We can review a case study to understand this difference. This comparative study was conducted by universities in India and America, to compare behaviours in India and USA. It was found that the students from India perceived depression as an outcome of the factors like, being unsuccessful in achieving goals, or else which can easily be controlled by them individually, and felt that only way to manage depression is to ensure social facilitation and religious practices. They suggest that understanding and treating depression must consider diverse point of views on mental illness for enhancing the efficacy of mental wellbeing plans (Nieuwsma, J.A.et al. (2011). p 539-568).

Relationship of psychology and culture has been discussed by many expert psychologists, according to Triandis H.C. quoted by Kitayama S. and Cohen D. (2010), history of psycho-cultural tendencies have shaped the contemporary approaches of cultural psychology, and the future of this field is also based upon the same. He emphasizes on the close connection of the language; a salient feature of each culture, and psyche. He believed that language is the key to understand the thoughts of the speaker. Due to interaction of various people within the same culture, many agreements are found on the ways to behave collectively. These practices by the time shape the mind accordingly, thus we can say, an individual expresses his culture which he has been brought up (Kitayama S. and Cohen D. 2010).

Mental illness as a stigma in various cultures

Perceiving mental disorder as a shameful fact may be due to many reasons, for example, any of the apparent reason of the sickness. Many studies have reported other major distinctions in behaviour towards mental illness amongst cultural groups in the USA. Carpenter-Song et al. (2010) performed a thorough, one and a half year long culture based study. The subjects for the study were 25 patients with critical mental illness. These were European-American patients engaged in regular treatment by expert psychiatrist, inclined to state convictions about mental sickness associated with medical viewpoints about the illness. Contrary to this, people belonging to Africa, America or Latin patients were more liable to highlight non-medicinal explanations about the signs of mental disorders. Though, all the subjects from 3 cultural clusters shared about some sort of stigmatization because of their mental problems, this very shamefulness sentiment proved to be a main part of the African-Americans reactions, hence it was not focused in case of European-Americans, instead they inclined to consider mental problems as major and most important side of the human requirements on health. As far as African-Americans were concerned, they were frustrated when the clinicians emphasized on the need of medication. In case of Latin persons, they generally considered diagnosis of mental sickness to be a severe damage to their social image and status; they focused on stating the sickness on a very low severity to stay safe from extreme stigma (Carpenter.S. E. (2010) p 224-251).

As argued earlier, when we talk about stigma, its severity may be different in different individual cultures, which refers to a diverse nature in western and non-western cultures. In the non-western culture, sentiment of dishonour linked with mental disorder is very high. In such cases a mental situation, in which the patient thinks as if he is humiliated or not cared by anyone, leads to extreme loss of self-belief; thus the symptoms of mental sickness may even enhance. Another evaluation of the association between ethnicity & cultural beliefs and mental disorders is conducted by Abdullah et al. (2011). This study illustrates thoughts on broad diversity of culture related ideas embedded in mental condition. For instance, a number of the cultures may not regard mental disorder as a cause of disgrace, some of those only focus on the extreme problems but others may feel shame on disorders of any level of problem. Generally, non-western people are highly anxious about their traditions, self-control, individual associations and expressive connections, mental illness is taken as shameful dilemma, not only for the specific person, but for the whole immediate and extended family. (Abdullah et al. 2011)

Resistance from the patients

Bailey et al. (2011) have shred about reluctant behaviours regarding mental treatment. He notes that sense of being ashamed, religion related misconceptions, lack of trust on the clinicians and language barriers & communication issues may be the reason behind this resistance in opting for mental health treatment as required (Bailey, R.K.et al. 2011 p 548-557.) In certain cultures clients show a lot of resistance just to satisfy their self-respect that they are normal and it will be real dishonour if they admit and accept need for mental treatment. That is the main reason behind the concept that understanding culture of the client is very important, so as to understand the root causes of the resistance and reluctance. During the therapies, the clinician must develop a good rapport with the client, which is only possible with some awareness on the culture of the client. An expert clinician must focus on building a good relationship with the client during a few initial therapeutic sessions. It may be performed through friendly discussion demonstrating interest in getting awareness on the client’s culture, which must be complemented through attempts to gain knowledge on the same through books and other sources, such as, friends and family of the client, other members of the same community and other internet sources. This way the client will share many thoughts from his subconscious, and the root may be identified, along with a great control over the expected resistance from the client. Especially when we talk about non-western culture; as argued earlier; their stigma may be a great source of resistance. This can be overcome, if the client receives friendly signals from the clinician, and a sense of trust worthiness for thought sharing.

Cultural sensitivity while treating non-western clients

Generally, Non-western clients, especially Muslims adhere to their religious beliefs; therefore, it is crucial to be aware on the cultural heritage, and religious background of the Muslims for the contemporary psychologists, so as to ensure efficacy of the treatment, as this group of clients is rather difficult and needs to be understood properly. We have a discussion about the Muslim cluster in the non-western culture as it the biggest majority group in the non-west representation. Considering religion, as a central point of the human life, makes it possible for a practitioner to manage therapeutic process with a high level of skill and anticipation of the optimal output, when tackled in religious framework. Religious beliefs, spiritual thoughts and mental health have an interesting correlation to apply for treating several mental disorders efficiently. Keshavarzi H. and Haque A. (2014) in an article highlight the need of improving the psycho-treatment procedures with the help of its integration with the culture and religious values, while treating Muslims for psychological disorder. Religious faiths about the reason of mental sickness are typically unconnected to biological systems. Most of these are considered as a curse due to any bad deed in the past, or due to some spirits. However these symptoms may be different in the young and old generations. Also the nature of sickness differs in the native non-western client and second generation borne in a different culture. (Keshavarzi H. and Haque A. 2014)

Keshavarzi H. and Haque A. (2013) also quote Veling et al., (2008) who have highlighted non-western tendency of community based culture. It is a general norm that Muslim are fond of replication of a community environment similar to the native culture, wherever they live, such as community centers, caring for right of neighbours, selfless attitudes, mutual reliance and family values. These strong bonding practices generally tend to reduce chances of mental problems.

Cultural Factors Psychology
Cultural Factors Psychology

Lack or absence of cultural knowledge, especially on religious faith, norms and practices by non-Muslim therapists may be a hurdle in creating a remedial association with the client. It is important to be aware of certain practices which are extremely conflicting with Muslim cultures as observed in the west. Male and female interaction can be one of the examples, which is extremely prohibited in Muslim culture, though considered a normal matter in other cultures. This can lead to a serious problem during the sessions, if not understood according to the cultural requirements. For the therapist, it is also recommendable to make collaboration with religious leaders, so as to enhance religious understanding on the Muslim psyche and Islamic modes of treatment (Keshavarzi H. and Haque A. 2013).

We see that there is lack of sufficient materials on culture specific treatment methodologies for non-western clients. Many therapeutic concepts cannot be applied on the non-western client the way these may probably be efficient for the western client. Treatment of non-western client, though complicated, it also holds many helpful resources within its roots. As we see that in the non-western culture, family values and social relationships are highly cherished. These may a helpful tool for resource mobilization. To cope with language barriers family members can be a helpful resource. Another precaution is also recommended by Cowen P. et al (2012) that assigning a translator during sessions also demands special care about the selection of the person to interpret. As a general observation it is a fear that involving a translator, other than the therapist himself, may cause difficulty to achieve specific results, besides ever-increasing the duration of the meeting. Mare transformation of the language may not be helpful while the person is not a health expert, sometimes the spirit of the conversation is lost while translation process. This problem can only be conquered with the help of same community members, close family relation, or assigning a professional psychologist, the responsibility to communicate and interpret with the non-western client, and then be a part of diagnosis and therapeutic process. These dissimilarities are not exclusive for Muslims only; the other representatives of the non-western culture, such as Hindus and Buddhist are also different in terms of their traditions, norms and their approach towards mental illness, from the western culture. The same requirement of studying the specific culture persists for the therapist for a patient who belongs to any of these cultures (Cowen P. et al 2012).

All these arguments on the study of clinical psychology elucidate that dealing mannerism must represent adaptability according to the requirement of the culture when handling patient from a culture, which the therapist does not belong to. It must be understood that mainstream psychological methodologies might not fulfill the extraordinary needs of the situation. It is also quite natural that a single person may not possess the knowledge about each and every culture in the world, which makes things more complicated for the psychologist to have the anticipated outcomes. In some cases patients may even assume biased behaviour from any person or a group, financial stress, and a feel of inaccessibility to services if he is uncomfortable in any other culture, this might transform into the symptoms of mental illness later on. As a general observation, most of the cases of migrants emerge due to adaptability issues and may become severe if not handled on time with due diligence (Cowen P. et al 2012. p. 26. Ch 3).

As argued earlier, mental health issues with the systematic application of connection with the clients may notably increase because, most of the issues come forward because of cultural intricacy. Even the best knowledgeable practitioner may not be able to ascertain mental wellbeing of a patient, if, he does not make himself well aware of the culture; the patient is coming from, and all probable cultural approaches which may be contributing in increase of mental illness motives in the subconscious of the patient. The contemporary studies emphasize that culture has unambiguous connection with psychological problems. A psychotherapist must not stress on conservative systems of treatment, and bring in inventive thoughts in accordance to the requirement and judge diverse features of cultural psychology (Tseng W.S 2008).

As we learned from Keshavarzi H. and Haque A. (2014), that initial effort for applying the psychological approach is the precise judgment of the issue and the performance level of the patient. In this regard, the therapist has to collect information which is essentially required for treatment. If the judgment indicates a high tendency of the client towards religion, the therapist must take that into account. This may be evaluated during initial informal discussions through the use of terminologies and his general approach. The clinician must have an intention to develop an understanding with the patient on how the objective of the treatment is set. Later, a detailed session should be conducted to assess how he expects the improvement as a result of the therapeutic process. If the patient does not take interest in self-actualization, and wants focused attention to the specific problem, therapist must not resist, and make the client comfortable, removing discomforts of cultural difference (Keshavarzi H. and Haque A. 2014).

When we talk about the cultural beliefs in Arabian culture we cannot exclude religious and traditional methods of the psychotherapies. The majority of the Arabs rely on conventional healers, also referred as faith healers, such as experts of herbal medicines, religious elders of the region, healing through rituals. Unfortunately the initial level of mental disorder is assumed to be an assault of evil spirits such possession of the body, which can just be treated with the help of rituals. Treating the mentally ill person is believed as a punishment for the patient, that might mark him as a crazy or abnormal person forever, thus restricting hi normal movement in the in the society for the rest of his life (Parekh R. 2013).

The most complex idea about this subject is the command of a clinician about the features of every culture. Though it is not simple but the clinician must be open to learn about the cultural features which truly have an effect on the healing procedure. Cultural knowledge compliments the success of the healing procedure by demonstrating respect for the patient and the culture. The most important aspect of the point is that a proficient psychologist must be impartial, enthusiastic, and considerate on the cultural surroundings, the history and its link with the course of analysis and therapy.

The whole discussion stressed over an idea that culture and psychology cannot be viewed in isolation; we cannot suppose on the performance of brain and a culture bound psychosomatic approach, linked with one culture and expected to apply in any other culture, these aspects must be taken into account during therapeutic process.

While treating non-western clients, we must be clear on a few general distinctions in the culture, Such as:

  • Adaptability issues
  • Effect of religious beliefs on psychological beliefs
  • Strong family bonding
  • Reluctance of women on open communication with a male therapist,
  • Entirely different social environment
  • Less preference of psychological treatment as compared to physical issues.
  • Language barrier

Keeping all these aspects in mind, a clinician has to show respect for that cultural characteristic to develop outstanding professional relationship with the patients. Talking about sentimental problems in a responsive manner may help in this regard, because, general tendency of the non-western clients demonstrates shyness in discussing personal events, which may point towards the roots of the problem which may be linked with the cultural beliefs. Thus, to discover secrets of the subconscious, information on the patient’s culture is unavoidable.

As we have already discussed that family bonding and social relationships are very strong in the non-western culture, these may also give rise to some problems related to the expectations associated with these values. These false expectations may give birth to a feeling of disappointment or betrayal from a close person. It also makes them feel that those people have wasted their sacrifices and have not cherished their support. This leads to anger and fury for their own selves as well as for others. This also gives rise to hopelessness, and trust over others including their psychologist. It can also result into discontinuation of constructive attitude; which generates dire need of family support, counselling and cognitive therapy with individual. A feel of being deprived regarding marital rights can be an example of such cases. These sort of cases are culturally sensitive and may be dealt with high care, after acquiring sufficient knowledge of the specific cultural values and norms (Keshavarzi H. and Haque A. 2014).

Mainstream methodologies: Benefits and Perils

Before concluding the paper, we must focus on the perils of the mainstream methodologies when applied in non-western culture. During our argument, one thing has been concluded that we cannot study psychotherapeutic treatment in isolation; culture must be included in the analytical process. We can classify the type of clients in two culture specific groups:

  • Western culture
  • Non-western culture

Both have very clear dividing lines for general understanding on cultural beliefs. As we conclude that cultural beliefs play a major role in psychiatric diagnosis and treatment. The very first step involves the basic understanding on the culture of the patient and to what extent these beliefs and norm influence his cognitive behaviour. Though these are the two basic cultural groups, the non-western cluster may further be divided into more clusters based on religion and geographic trends. Muslims; the largest group in the non-western culture are more influenced by the religious education, rituals, spiritual treatment and other limitations. The beliefs of the patients may not be agreed by the practitioner, however it is important, not to argue with the patient, and give him a feel that the practitioner believes him and respects his point of view. Other clusters within the non-western cultures should also be dealt accordingly. Suspicion on the clinician, being afraid of the treatment, being afraid of racist of discriminatory approach, language and communication barriers, and cultural & religious issues may hinder the successful treatment (Keshavarzi H. and Haque A. 2013).

This reaches the following understandings:

  • Considering culture is the most important aspect in psychological treatment.
  • Initial meetings should be focused on gaining awareness about cultural and religious tendencies of the patient.
  • Physical interaction between male and female is strictly prohibited in non-western culture; this must be avoided at any condition.
  • General methodologies may not be applicable to all the patients. In the study of psychology, every client has his unique identity, he must be dealt individually. The approach that proved to be successful for treating depression of a western women, may not work for exact replication for a non-western woman.
  • The clinician must not try to influence patient’s cultural beliefs.
  • The clinician must show respect for the culture to develop mutual trust and good professional relationship.
  • Mare translation is not enough for the sessions, the interpreter must be a professional therapist, or a family or community member of the patient if the first option is not possible.
  • Consultation with the family is also recommended when possible. This may also help to overcome stigma and seek early healing of the problem rather that making it worse due to delayed treatment.
  • Depressive disorders may be similar in different cultures, however, the therapist must study, what is hidden behind the symptoms, inside the cultural context.

Conclusion

As a concluding note we can easily claim that psychiatric diagnosis cannot be made leaving the cultural factors behind. Making an attempt to do so may lead to commit wrong diagnosis and ultimately a wrong treatment. In advanced clinical psychology, wrong diagnosis and treatment is as dangerous as an unnecessary medicinal injection. A clinician has to demonstrate high level of professionalism and skill to handle the case with careful cultural sensitivity. There may be chances to disagree with the client belief, and also his cultural belief may be opposite from the therapist’s cultural norms, yet, he must not mention so in front of the client. There is high probability for resistance from the client and he also may show distrust on the treatment, however, the therapist has to be unbiased and temperamental. He has to make the client feel that his opinion is respected; being a leader or teacher may not be an appropriate approach, rather than being a facilitator.

As any unnecessary medicine may cause harm, in the same way, wrong approach towards cultural psychology may be equally harmful. A uniform methodology may not be applicable in all cases. If the client is under strong influence of religion and other features of the culture, it may not be ignored. A good rapport with the client is a half way towards the successful psychological treatment, and understanding the Cultural Factors is the map to reach this destination. .

References

Abdullah, T., Brown, T.L. (2011). Cultural Factors, Mental illness stigma and ethno-cultural beliefs, values, and norms: an integrative review. Clinical Psychology Review, 31: 934-948.

Bailey, R.K., Milapkumar, P., Barker, N.C., Ali, S., Jabeen, S. (2011). Cultural Factors and Major depressive disorder in the African American population. J Natl Med Assoc.,103: 548-557.

Carpenter-Song, E., Chu, E., Drake, R.E., Ritsema, M., Smith, B., Alverson, H. (2010). Ethno-cultural variations in the experience and meaning of mental illness and treatment: implications for access and utilization. Cultural Factors Transcultural Psychiatry, 47(2): 224-251.

Cowen P. Harrison P. Burns T. (2012). p.621. Ch 21. Shorter Oxford Textbook of Psychiatry Cultural Factors. Oxford University Press.

Keshavarzi H. Haque A. (2014) Integrating indigenous healing methods in therapy: Muslim beliefs and pract ices, International Journal of Cultural Factors and Mental Health, 7:3, 297-314.

Keshavarzi H. Haque A. (2013) The International Journal for the Psychology of Religion and Cultural Factors, 23:230–249.

Kitayama S. and Cohen D. (2010). Handbook of Cultural Factors psychology. Guilford Press.

Nieuwsma, J.A., Pepper, C.M., Maack, D.J., Birgenheir, D.G. (2011). Cultural Factors perspectives on depression in rural regions of India and the United States. Transcultural Psychiatry, 48(5): 539-568.

Parekh R. (2013) The Massachusetts General Hospital Textbook on Diversity and Cultural Factors in Mental Health Springer shop

Tseng W.S (2008). Cultural Factors and Psychotherapy: Review and Practical Guidelines Sage Publications.

WonPat-Borja, A.J., Yang, L.H., Link, B.G., Phelan, J.C. (2012). Cultural Factors Eugenics, genetics, and mental illness stigma in Chinese Americans. Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol., 47(1): 145-156.

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Merleau-Ponty

Merleau-Ponty’s Work Philosophy of Perception

This philosophical essay intends to identify and explore the key features of Maurice Merleau-Ponty’s approach to the question of perception in “Phenomenology of Perception” by him and discusses the problems or weaknesses if there are any. This philosophy essay expresses argued position on a subject. It presents consideration to be good reasons for the claims that are made and the views defended in this literary piece of work. Furthermore, the essay intends to clearly, distinguishes the philosophical problems addressed in it, and strictly sticks to the reflections upon the issues that are raised by this topic. In order to clarify and develop a point to examine more precisely the common background in the theory of perception in Merleau-Ponty’s work the essay discusses views of others who also have written on the topic (perception).

Analysis

“Phenomenology of Perception” (1945) is the major work of philosopher Maurice Merleau-Ponty, one of the founders of phenomenology. The author criticized in this book design Cartesian mentalist and the language, which would make the simple words representations of concepts mentally or objects outside (Merleau-Ponty, 2004, pp.01-589).

Perception is a faculty biophysical or phenomenon physio-sychological and cultural links to the action of living worlds and the environment through the senses and ideologies individual or collective. In humans, perception is also related to the mechanisms of cognition by the abstraction inherent in the idea and concepts learned in thought. The word therefore means perception or sensory ability (the instinct for example), is the process of collecting and processing the information or sensitive sensory (in cognitive psychology, for example), or awareness resulting. In experimental psychology, in the human being, there are scales of perception conscious perception and unconscious, also known as implicit or subliminal (Baldwin, 2007, 33-41). This distinction has been extended to other animals insofar as it is known, or in another measure, can be trained and conditioned to give or not they have received or not a stimulus. The perception of a situation involves senses, the mind, and the ideas at the moment and time.

Fortunately, a close analysis of the overlap between “Phenomenology of Perception” by Merleau-Ponty not only allows us to understand the benefit of hindsight but also to assess the consistency of the analysis of perception. In “Phenomenology of Perception”, Merleau-Ponty (1962, pp.01-589) develops more fully theories of perception, he tries to describe our first experience of living and the world as it is given before any interpretation and scientific knowledge.

Author rejects both empiricism to its choice of atomization and failures to report in general terms of structural models of our experience and rationalism (01-589). Because it separates conscience of the world and proposes an existential perspective that can establish dialectical relationship between the subject and the world, it recognizes the nature of consciousness, mainly due to the situation and the life of the body. Consciousness is consciousness of something and is directed toward the world. “Phenomenology of Perception” “goes further by seeking to discover intentionality operative or pre-reflexive links and predicative that underlie our existence in the world. The first examination of the relationship between man and intentional and the world is through reductions phenomenological method and the first is to put all preconceived outstanding about reality and the natural attitude of everyday life that is “bracketed” and examined in a philosophical or transcendental perspective for understanding the essential dialogue between consciousness and the world.

The precise description of pre-reflective experiences, such as especial articulation, movement, time perception, sensation and sexuality, are one approach. The analysis of pathological cases in which the normal conditions of being in the world are suspended and intentionality weakened and it allows further research. Correspondingly, the human mind has not a pure perceptual function. It is inseparable from the physical data that put thoughts into motion, thus this is the novel form, and more concretely in a modern world, it introduces relativity, which can best grasp this entry in a situation. In short, as the work of Merleau-Ponty keep a referential dimension intrinsic, it is characterized by an effort unrewarding to realism but by the manner of reporting a particular phenomenological point of view (Merleau-Ponty, 1962, pp. 01-589).

Perception is what gives the material concept of the understanding, the “union” forming the sensible object. Perception is reality, which is external, and it is not even given in perception. This perception is a sensation that applies to an object general and not to a specific object. In this sense, the “perceptual judgment” remains purely subjective, opposes “judgment of experience” that is subject to the conditions of necessity and universality. If perception is subjective, so you do not consider as true or as false as it is the understanding that one is able to make a judgment that will have a truth value. When we speak of illusion or appearance is therefore refers not to despise but to perceptions of the mind that makes the mistake of taking subjective mode of representation, perception, an objective mode. The perception, whether sharp or not, shows the registration of rights in a “horizon” which cannot escape, in a space where it is enclosed. The view is thus limited to a certain distance, as well as hearing and touch has their own limitations.

Merleau-Ponty Philosophy
Merleau-Ponty Philosophy

Perception is always wrong because it is too human. Until then, it had always been regarded either as an image or as a sign of external things. In all cases, it was thought as a representation of the thing. I believe that the perception gives something “in the flesh” in his bodily presence unlike the experiences of consciousness (e.g., imagination) that represent things missing. This design is based on the intentionality of consciousness shows that it is by no means a receptacle containing a set of images, but acts of sight. For example, the perception of a cube has nothing to do with the imagination of the same cube, as it is a case of the other “targeted” different kind though their object is the same. Perception is never isolated. We have a perceptual field in which ordered a series of perceptions, what is called perceptual sketches that complement each other in building activity of the meaning of things (Webster, Werner & Field, 2005, pp.241–277).

Based on the reflections of Husserl, Merleau-Ponty (1962, pp.01-589) seeks to demonstrate the first perception. This, he says, is by no means the result of an arrangement of sensations but rather an activity of s open to the world of life. He wants to show that the distinction Husserl between the act of sight and the target object is not primitive and that below it there is a reciprocal implication of subject and object. The experience of perception is the location of this co-belonging of consciousness and the world and that is why perception is a primary experience and precedes speech (301-315).

The suspension of classes and hierarchies that we submit our impressions are often accompanied by a relaxation of the functional perspective on individual objects of our world and a higher prevalence of incongruous detail in the perception of our environment. Such a bet is pending is seen more strongly in times of crisis, when the loss of conscious control over the body and the environment produces a hypersensitivity impressions we reflect normally as trivial and irrelevant. It draws our attention to the operation of pre-reflective and overwhelming our senses, independent of an individual’s personal trauma (LaRock, 2002, pp.231–258).

If knowledge was based entirely on the sensation then it should share the properties of the latter. However, the sensation is a snapshot, not a state but an event that remains vanishes (Merleau-Ponty, 2004, pp.88-136). Sensation is more “mobile” unstable and always singular, it is the result of the encounter between an external object and the ability of sensitive man; meeting takes a different form each time. Thus, knowledge is nothing more than a cluster of sensations that it would be impossible to organize because its elements are incomparable with each other. It is in this sense that we must break away from sense perception to reach true knowledge (Casarett, 1999, pp.125–139).

I agree that sensation is equal to knowledge but it seeks to demonstrate the utility value it for life. For life, it does not mean only that of man but that of any organization. Sensation and movement are the two properties shared by all living beings. The feeling gives access to the outside world and its changes and allows the body to adapt to it and thus to ensure its own survival. Merleau-Ponty (1962, pp. 01-589) gives rise to a true science of sensitive, distinguishing the “sensitive clean” which refers to one of the five senses and not others, and “common sensible” seized all the senses (e.g. movement). He hangs up the existence of a sixth sense, “common sense” that allows the unification of sensitive data from the various sensory organs. In a way, we can say that sensation becomes a real object of knowledge even if it is still not the subject in the sense that it would be knowledge.

I believe sensation is not a reliable source of knowledge. For this, I use the famous example of the “piece of wax.” Initially it presents a set of sensible qualities: it is hard, cold, smells of flowers makes a particular sound when hit etc… Suppose we approach this piece of wax fire, then all of these qualities disappear and replaced by others. However, it does not say much for this thing, which is come before me, is something that I perceived the wax before. This is the same wax that before and after exposure is to fire so this is not what I perceived with the senses that can explain what the wax. However, the imagination, which conceives of something changes, cannot do more because these variations are endless. Only the mind can. Thus, I come to consider the perception rather than as a “vision” but as “an inspection of the mind.” Perception is an act of intellection, producing an idea that can be “imperfect and confused” or “clear and distinct”. In the latter case, there is identification of perception and truth. It is found again in the early 20th century with Alain, which makes perception a “function of understanding.”

The problem of perception has been a central concern of classical philosophy about the origin of knowledge, as evidenced by the famous “Molyneux problem” that looks like this: Suppose a man born blind who has been learned to distinguish by touch a cube and a sphere of the same metal and of equivalent size, find the sense of sight. However, it is noted that the response was generally negative (Webster, Werner & Field, 2005, pp.241–277). Note further that the issue was the assessment of the powers of the senses of sight, often seen as primordial sense, compared to the other senses. The outside world is a construction from sense impressions. One thing, it is the meeting by intelligence, various sensations under the same name, so there is nothing that exists outside of what is perceived. Somehow, the chair I am sitting over there as soon as I left the room. This doctrine is called immaterialism (Casarett, 1999, pp.125–139).

We can also mention the skeptics who do not have little involvement in the devaluation of “knowledge” sensitive. Indeed, a compiled list of cases demonstrates that the perception is sometimes an illusion, an error and in that sense, we should not be proud. Let two of their examples: a square tower we look from a distant point seems round, and a stick dipped in part in water seems twisted (LaRock, 2002, pp.231–258). The list of examples, however, does not answer the question of whether these errors are due to a perception that is itself misleading or judgment that accompanies it. Note finally that the Epicurean Lucretius says it is impossible to demonstrate that the senses deceive us and more importantly, the state would condemn this reason (LaRock, 2002, pp.231–258).

The feeling does not correspond to the coincidence between the subject and the feeling quality (e.g. red) collected. Consciousness is perceptual consciousness. On the contrary, the feeling is embodied in a “horizon of meaning” and is from the perceived meaning that there may be associations with similar experiences (and not vice versa). Printing cannot “wake others”: the perception is not made ​​of sensitive data supplemented by a “projection of memories “in effect, seek to memories presupposes precisely that sensitive data will be formatted and have acquired a sense, then that is what meaning the “projection of memories” was supposed to return (Casarett, 1999, pp.125–139).

Merleau-Ponty (1962, pp. 101-622) explicitly rejects then design Cartesian or mentalist language, which would make the simple phrase of representations mental. The words are not, for him, a reflection of the thought: “the word is not the” sign “of thought”. It cannot be severed from the speech and thought: both are “wrapped in one another, meaning is made ​​in the word and the word is the existence of external sign. He focuses on a conception of the word and the word, which does not reduce to simple signs of thought or the external object, but become the presence of this idea in the sensible world, not the garment (22). He discovered in the conceptual meaning of words an existential meaning emotional (33).

The expression does not that translate well meaning, but realizes or actualizes. The language implies an activity first intentional, which passes through the body itself. Thought is nothing inside; it does not exist outside the world and out of words. There is therefore no thought precedes speech thought is already language (“this inner life is an inner language”) and the language is already thinking.

Conclusion

This philosophy essay explored the key features of Merleau-Ponty’s approach to the question of perception in Phenomenology of Perception problems or weaknesses in of the topic and it found that the body is not a potential object of study for science and an inherence of consciousness and body with the analysis of perception must consider. The primacy of perception signifies a primacy of experience, insofar as perception assumes an active constituent. Maurice Merleau-Ponty analyzes the notion of sensation, despite apparent evidence in the natural attitude and rejects the notion of pure sensation. He then refutes and prejudices the objective world because the perception is rooted in subjectivity that actually produces the indeterminate and confusion. We can conclude with following words that psychology has failed to define the sensation, but the physiology has not been more capable, as the problem of “objective world” arises again and enters in contradiction with the experience to understand what it means to “feel”, we must return to the pre-objective internal experience.

References

Casarett, D.J., 1999 Moral perception and the pursuit of medical philosophy. Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics, 20(2), pp.125–139

LaRock, E.F., 2002 Against the Functionalist Reading of Aristotle’s Philosophy of Perception and Emotion. International Philosophical Quarterly, 42(2), pp.231–258

Merleau-Ponty, M., 2004 The World of Perception O. Davis, ed., Routledge

Merleau-Ponty, M., 1962 The Phenomenology of Perception, Routledge

Webster, M.A., Werner, J.S. & Field, D.J., 2005 Adaptation and the phenomenology of perception. In C. Clifford & G. Rhodes, eds. Fitting the Mind to the World Adaptation and Aftereffects in High-level Vision Advances in Visual Cognition. Oxford University Press, pp.241–277

Baldwin, T., 2007 Reading Merleau-Ponty : on Phenomenology of perception, Routledge

Maurice Merleau-Ponty Wiki Page

Anger Management

Anger and Anger Management

The topic being discussed here is regarding anger and anger management, it is important to select this topic since it deals with a key psychological activity which is often difficult to understand for many psychologists. This topic has extreme relevance for human beings since it is important to assess what sorts of changes occur during the expression of anger and how anger management deals with it. This topic has its significance to the social environment of UAE since there exist workers of many fields here and all of them go through phases of anger throughout their professional life. The aim of this paper is to study the overall effects and properties of anger and anger management techniques.

Hypothesis

This paper will provide a significant insight into the topic of anger as well as anger management and would take many case examples from real life which would emphasize upon how this subject matter affects ordinary individuals.

Reviews

CBT to CDT: Toward a developmental paradigm for conceptualizing anger management

The study conducted by Tate in 1998 assesses that destructive responses to anger present a growing problem in the overall society, and programs for managing adult anger are proliferating across the nation. Many of the anger management interventions are grounded in cognitive behavioral paradigms which focus on controlling one’s thoughts as well as behaviors (Burns, 2004). While these programs show some effectiveness, they are not properly addressing the main problem. This study is based on the idea that the main reason for this failure might be the inadequate theoretical frameworks that form the underpinnings of these programs.

Main directional hypotheses for this research suggested that there would be a negative relationship between the developmental levels of ego of adults referred to anger management and batterer intervention programs and their trait anger and destructive response to anger scores, it also suggested that there would be a positive relationship between their ego levels and constructive response to anger scores. In this reference, the State-Trait Anger Expression Inventory-2 (STAXI-2) was used to assess trait anger; the Washington University Sentence Completion Test (WUSCT) was used in order to assess ego developmental levels; and the Anger Response Inventory (ARI) was used in order to assess both constructive as well as destructive responses to anger.

It was observed that a statistically significant positive relationship was emerged between ego developmental level and constructive responses to anger, and that a significant negative relationship was observed between ego developmental level and one dimension of destructive responses to anger (Lench, 2004). All of these results suggest that individuals at higher ego levels might be more capable of responding towards anger in constructive, as compared to destructive ways. The results attained by the researchers also offer promising evidence that Cognitive Developmental Theory may provide a more adequate theoretical foundation upon which to suggest more effective anger interventions through fostering upon psychological and personality growth.

Anger management style moderates effects of emotion suppression during initial stress on pain and cardiovascular responses during subsequent pain-induction

The author John Burns argue in 2007 that suppression of emotion, anger in particular, might be linked to heightened intensity of pain during a painful event. It is not clear at all whether a person’s anger management style moderates effects on pain intensity and cardiovascular responses during the event of pain (Burns, 2005).

The purpose of the study was to determine whether (a) trait anger-in and/or a trait anger-out moderate effects of Emotion-Induction ×Emotion Suppression manipulations during mental arithmetic upon pain intensity and on different cardiovascular responses during and following a pain task, such that any type of so called ‘mismatch’ relationships emerge, and (b) general emotional expressiveness tends to account for these mentioned effects. In the methodology section of the study, healthy non-patients (N=187) were assigned to 1 of 6 of the total conditions for a mental arithmetic task. Here, cells were formed by crossing 2 Emotion-Induction which were anxiety and anger ×3 Emotion Suppression which were non-suppression, expressive and experiential conditions. After mental arithmetic, the participating individuals underwent a cold presser which was followed by recovery. Systolic blood pressure (SBP), heart rate (HR), diastolic BP (DBP), and ratings of pain intensity were thoroughly recorded. A four-way interaction was observed from pain intensity: Only for those individuals with experiential suppression/anger-induction condition, anger-out was related significantly as compared to pain recovery. It was concluded that a mismatch situation may apply for high anger-out individuals who suppress their overall emotion in a certain circumstance and thereby might suffer from greater amount of discomfort as well as physiological responsiveness to pain feelings than high anger-out individuals who do not have to suppress.

Anger and its management

The author Anju in 2013 says that everybody feels anger from one time to another. Individuals have been documented feeling anger since the ancient biblical times when Lord was considered to be angry. It was seen that babies even exhibit signs that are interpreted as anger, this includes screaming or crying (Burns, 2005). Anger is not unique to anyone, animals also have the sense to feel as well as express anger. In our daily lives we get angry over at least a small thing on almost a regular basis, whether it is with a spouse or loved one, or perhaps with an authoritative figure. Anger is often deemed as a healthy emotion when it is appropriately expressed. It can also have devastating effects upon a person. Anger is at the root of many social problems, e.g. domestic violence, verbal and physical abuse and community violence etc (Schieman, 2000). Problematic interpersonal relations might also disrupt employment activities due to the interference of anger upon workplace performance. It is often seen that anger can destroy obstruct problem solving skills, destroy relationships, and increase social withdrawal. Anger impacts our physical health. For example, it can affect immune system; contribute towards headaches, severe gastrointestinal symptoms, hypertension, migraines, and coronary artery disease. Anger is also deemed as a healthy and valid emotion but many of ordinary individuals are taught not to express anger. There’s no doubt about it that we live in an angry society in which signs that anger abounds are everywhere. Anger is deemed as a global phenomenon and referrals to anger management programs have increased.

Anger management as a component of inpatient residential treatment with adolescents: A multiple case study

The author Andrew says in 2007 that the purpose of his study was to assess the value of anger management training as an ingredient of inpatient residential treatment with small children or adolescents. Four assessment procedures alongside interviews and record reviews were employed by the author in order to gather information across a wide spectrum of personality and behavioral variables. The assessment addressed were consisted of the Revised Problem Behavior Checklist (RPBC-PAR Edition),pre and post testing with the Millon Adolescent Clinical Inventory (MACI), the Novaco Anger Scale and Provocation Inventory (NAS-PI), the State-Trait Anger Expression Inventory-2 (STAXI-2), and completion by participating individuals of two interview questionnaires adapted by the researcher from Fitzsimmons to properly measure behavioral and personal characteristics. A case study of each participating individual was employed in order to identify additionally relevant variables.

Research was completed with ten adolescents at an inpatient residential treatment center. The study consisted of 3 phases: 4 weeks of anger management training intervention occurring twice weekly for four consecutive weeks; pre-anger management training data-gathering in which pretests were administered; and post-training data-gathering in which post tests were administered and case study information was compiled.

The results assessed if the anger management training sessions produced changes in participating individuals, primarily in how they perceive themselves as well as their abilities. The assessment criteria should be evaluated which is relative to effectiveness in measuring change (Burns, 2007).

Help for hotheads; No one’s sure of its benefits, but anger management is increasingly recommended — or ordered — for those who can’t control their rage.

The author Martin says in 2004 that the judicial system has created the demand for anger management training. Judges across the nation use the various training programs as a means to ease overcrowding in jails, and unclog courtroom calendars. It may cost a county $100 a day to lock up a defendant for the crime of road rage, physical assaults or disturbing the peace. The courts can go on to release the defendant and order the person to enroll at any anger management program (Bruehl, 2007).

Most classes are led by teachers with backgrounds in counseling, they go on to help clients decide what is worth getting angry over and when anger is appropriate to be shown, how to behave assertively — not destructively or aggressively — to attain what you want (Bruehl, 2007). Programs, which may go on from ten weeks to a year, cost from $200 to about $1,000. In part because of the rapid rise in popularity of such programs, no state or national standards govern what should be provided as a lesson in anger management or who should be qualified to teach it. Although exact figures are difficult to come by, many estimate that about seven thousand individuals have been trained in U.S to teach such courses.

Effectiveness of a rural anger management program in preventing domestic violence recidivism

In the paper given by James in 2005, domestic violence in a rural area was thoroughly investigated with special attention given to the association of reduced recidivism of an anger management program. In doing so, the author explored a total of 9 hypotheses concerned with subjects who had been convicted on charges from violent behavior and how factors like gender, prior criminal history, and age were relative with completion of anger management training and recurrence of the various types of violent behaviors. Data was gathered from various different court documents for every domestic violence case which have occurred in a rural county during a 5 year period. Cross-tabulation of many different categorical results revealed incidence and rates by age, gender, and anger management program completion status. Individuals with prior criminal history were observed to be more likely to be the offenders of domestic violence and more likely to re-offend. Most of the observed subjects did not complete an anger management program, but many of those who did, completion was found to be relative with modestly reduced recidivism. Neither recidivism rates nor anger management completion were found to be associated with gender or age of individuals. Practical ways to apply findings from various researches related to anger management are proposed for human services, judicial, and law enforcement areas (Thomas, 2001). Future research is suggested by the author to replicate findings through longitudinal studies and to implement better comprehensive evaluations of domestic violence interventions throughout rural human services practices.

Choices: Anger and Anger Management in Rehabilitative Care

The author Linda says in 2013 that violent acts are on rise and rehabilitation providers as caregivers may encounter anger on a daily basis. The purpose of the article is to discuss anger and describe anger management as well as its related strategies based on behavioral interventions grounded in Choice Theory. The application of choice theory to anger is the belief that individuals are not externally but internally motivated, and that outside events do not make people do almost any sort of thing (Gold, 2007). Thus, what drives a person’s anger behaviors are internally developed notions of what is satisfying for them.

Anger becomes a choice for almost all of the individuals along with its management (Shatzman, 2003). Choosing strategies to manage anger is the main step to reducing the potential for angry emotions to escalate up to the point of violent and unwanted acts that threaten clients and caregiver’s safety. Anger-free environments tend to greatly promote mental/physical health and therefore go on to establish elements of safe living especially at the working environments in a variety of rehabilitative type of care settings.

Anger Management Essay
Anger Management Essay

Pitching a fit does anger management training help stem violence in the workplace

The paper argues that anger-management became a buzzword during the previous decade. Judges oftentimes will mandate that an individual get anger-management counseling, only when they seem unable to control their overall behavior and it is partly why they are present at the court system. Anger management is most of the time included in drug treatment as well as in couples counseling.

In most instances, it has been observed that a worker who demonstrates inappropriate anger at his or her colleagues is using the workplace as a venting mechanism for feelings that have little to do with the actual job (Blackburn, 2000). Therefore, it is due to such acts that unwanted acts happen and these acts should be avoided by both employees as well as employers at a given workplace so that the flow of work is carried on with relative ease.

Anger and depression management: Psycho-educational skill training interventions for women caregivers of a relative with dementia

The author David in 2003 examines the short-term impact of two theoretically based psycho-educational small group interventions having distressed caregivers, and also the role of specific mediator and moderator variables on the mentioned caregiver outcomes. After discussing the results, the author conclude that the data are consistent with a growing body of evidence which goes on to support the effectiveness of skills training especially among the small groups, in order to improve both the affective states as well as the type of coping strategies used by caregivers. Care is a very important factor of anger management (Kellner, 1999).

Clinical outcome and client satisfaction of an anger management group program

This retrospective quasi-experimental study presented by author Mary in 2001 evaluated the effectiveness of an anger management group program for various different clients with mental health problems. The program as discussed by the author was offered by outpatient mental health occupational therapy services of a selected community general hospital. 64 clients, about 59 percent were suffering from depressive disorder, enrolled in the program to participate in the study. The post-treatment and pre-treatment scores of the participants on the Anger Control Inventory were compared with the State-Trait Anger Expression Inventory. The results pointed towards a significant decremented in the overall experience of intense anger alongside better improvement in behavioral and cognitive coping mechanisms, and also better improvement rate in anger control after treatment. Most of the respondents found the program very helpful. The pace of the program alongside the variety of learning activities were seen as areas for improvement. The results of the overall program showed that it had positive impact on anger management. Useful suggestions were thoroughly identified for continuous quality improvements which could help the program. Anger management thrives on suggestions (Coon, 2003).

Anger Management May Not Help at All

The author Benedict argues in 2004 that Ron Artest is not the only male athlete to be sent for anger-management training. Earlier that year, Los Angeles Dodger outfielder Milton Bradley gave a statement that he would seek anger counseling. Some anger-control techniques even seem to make individuals to become more apt to lose their temper (Coon, 2003). The author states that in a reanalysis of the data if St. John’s researchers, it was found that programs that encouraged individuals to feel their rage and to express it in counseling sessions were associated with terrible outcomes. The findings coincide with the message from a wide variety of studies in the 1990’s in which various different psychologists found that venting anger, for example, by hitting an object, in fact goes on to increase anger since it goes on to intensify physical sensations of fury like flushed face or a racing heart.

Conclusion

It was discussed throughout the paper that the phenomena of anger management is gaining rapid acceptance in the general society mainly due to the fact that more and more individuals are found to get themselves into trouble. This is also due to the fact that they tend to fail in controlling their anger which goes on to give them a terrible result.

References

Bruehl, S., al’Absi, M., France, C. R., France, J., Harju, A., Burns, J. W., & Chung, O. Y. (2007). Anger management style and endogenous opioid function: Is gender a moderator? Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 30(3), 209-19.

Burns, J. W., & Bruehl, S. (2005). Anger management style, opioid analgesic use, and chronic pain severity: A test of the opioid-deficit hypothesis. Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 28(6), 555-63.

Burns, J. W., PhD., Bruehl, S., PhD., & Caceres, C., PhD. (2004). Anger management style, blood pressure reactivity, and acute pain sensitivity: Evidence for “trait x situation” models. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 27(3), 195-204.

Burns, J. W., PhD., Quartana, P. J., M.S., & Bruehl, S., PhD. (2007). Anger management style moderates effects of emotion suppression during initial stress on pain and cardiovascular responses during subsequent pain-induction. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 34(2), 154-65.

Cara Shatzman, C. p. (2003, Apr 18). ‘Anger Management’ Is Not Worth Your Trip Out The Door. The Santa Fe New Mexican.

Coon, D. W., Thompson, L., Steffen, A., Sorocco, K., & Gallagher-Thompson, D. (2003). Anger and depression management: Psychoeducational skill training interventions for women caregivers of a relative with dementia. The Gerontologist,43(5), 678-89.

DOUG BLACKBURN, S. W. (2000, Jun 26). Pitching a fit does anger management training help stem violence in the workplace? Times Union

Gold, A. L. (2007). Anger management as a component of inpatient residential treatment with adolescents: A multiple case study. (Order No. 3257729, Northern Arizona University). ProQuest Dissertations and Theses, , 188-198.

Kellner, M. H., & Bry, B. H. (1999). The effects of anger management groups in a day school for emotionally disturbed adolescents. Adolescence, 34(136), 645-51.

Lench, H. C. (2004). Anger Management: Diagnostic Differences and Treatment Implication S. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 23(4), 512-531.

Schieman, S. (2000). Education and the activation, course, and management of anger. Journal of Health and Social Behavior,41(1), 20-39.

Thomas, S. P. (2001). Teaching healthy anger management. Perspectives in Psychiatric Care, 37(2), 41-8.

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