Conference: New perspectives in transcultural psychiatry (3 Nov. – 5 Nov. 2021, Berlin)

The conference “New perspectives in transcultural psychiatry“, held from 3 to 5 November 2021 in Berlin at the Centre Marc Bloch, Berlin, might be of interest to h-madness readers.

This hybrid international conference is organised within the framework of two ERC Starting Grants (‘Decolonizing Madness’, PI Ana Antic, University of Copenhagen, and ‘Governing Madness’, PI Romain Tiquet, CNRS, Marseille). It aims to explore a variety of new theoretical and methodological approaches, topics and voices in the global development of transcultural psychiatry in the second half of the twentieth century.

The conference includes presentations from scholars in history, anthropology, psychology, psychotherapy and clinical sciences, who will reflect on the development of networks, encounters and practices of knowledge production and sharing in transcultural psychiatry, and on the complex interrelationships between psychiatry and decolonisation in a global context.

For further information contact



Day one: 3 November

9:00-11:00Panel one – Searching for a Culturally Tailored Psychiatry Chair: Burcu Alcan  

Paul Marquis, ‘Institutional Psychotherapy’ in Colonial Algeria, Cultural ‘Revolution’ or Political Utopia? Therapeutic reforms in the Psychiatric Hospital of Blida-Joinville during the Algerian War of Independence (1954-1962)

Kutlughan Soyubol, Finding Ruh in the Forebrain: Mazhar Osman and the Emerging Turkish Psychiatric Discourse

Irène Favier, Unlike father, unlike son. A crossed-biographical perspective on two founding figures of Peruvian psychiatry
11-11:30Coffee break
11:30-13:30Panel two – Alternative geographies of transcultural psychiatry Chair: Ana Antic

Shilpi Rajpal, Decolonising Psychiatry; the Global Mental Health Movement in India, 1920-1980s

Nathanaelle Soler, The ‘Mythical Mind’ and the City: Missionary Ethnology, Urban Development and the Birth of Ethnopsychiatry in New Caledonia in the 1960s

Andres Rios-Molina, ‘Folk Psychiatry’ in Peru. Three Psychiatrists Seeing Native Peruvians Insanity during the first half of 20th century
14:30- 16:30Panel one- Alternative structures, treatments and actors Chair: Anita Von Poser

Raphaël Gallien, Transforming the asylum into a therapeutic village: Decolonizing the daily life of the asylum (Madagascar, 1959-1972)

Nancy Rose Hunt, A Wide, Uneven Trauma Zone: Talk, Experiments, Therapies, and Enmities in Congo’s Kivus and Rwanda

Anjana Bala, The Psychic Life of the Corporeal
16:30-17:00Coffee break
17:00-19:30Film screening – Harmoni: Healing Together (Together for mental health) – followed by debate with Erminia Colucci, Lily Kpobi and Diana Setiyawati Moderator: Ana Antic

Day 2: 4 November

9:00-11:00Panel three – Re-imagining the subjects of transcultural psychiatry Chair: Romain Tiquet  

Omnia El-Shakry, Invisible Bodies: Psychoanalysis, Subjugated Knowledges, and Intimate Ethics in Postwar Egypt

Lamia Moghnieh, Involutional Melancholia, Psychiatry and Society in late 1930s Lebanon: Rereading Gender, Modernity and illness in the case of May Ziade

Marianna Scarfone, What was colonial about metropolitan psychiatry? The ‘syndrome nord-africain’ in the clinical files (1930-1970)

Chris Sandal-Wilson, Palestinian patients and psychiatrists across the end of the British mandate, 1948
11:00-11:30Coffee break
11:30-13:30Panel two – Knowledge circulations and connexions Chair: Katie Kilroy-Marac   

Margherita Angelini, Dignity for All: Italian Mental Health Reform across borders

Cecilia Dracchio, Remotely pharmaceutical? Rethinking Global Mental Health and the pharmaceuticalisation of the self from rural Ghana

Emmanuel Delille, The Interuniversity Research Group in Medical Anthropology and Ethnopsychiatry (GIRAME, 1982): Mental health, bilingualism and multicultural politics in Canada

Michael Suter, The politics of ethnopsychology in the long moment of decolonization: psychoanalysis between West Africa and the European New Left
14:30-16:30Panel three – Institutions, (professional) networks and practices of global psychiatry Chair: Gabriel Abarca-Brown  

Jennifer Lambe, Mind Wars: Psychiatry and its Critics across the Florida Straits

Claire Edington, ‘Bandung as Method’ and the possibilities for a decolonial history of psychiatry

David Robertson, Reliability as Enculturation: Instruments and Practices of Collective Observation in Postwar Psychiatric Epidemiology

Sofie Baarnhielm, Cultural Formulation Interview in DSM-V
16:30-17:00Coffee break
17:00-18:30Round table on sources, methodology and ethics (Katie Kilroy-Marac, Lamia Moghnieh, Amira Yahiaoui, Pradipto Roy) Moderated by Romain Tiquet.

Day three: 5 November

9:30-11:30Panel one – The politics of transcultural psychiatry Chair: Christopher Chamberlin

Marco Ramos, Ghosts in the Archive: Psychoanalysis and Terror in Cold War Argentina

Michael Pettit, ‘Angela’s Psych Squad’: Black Psychology against the American Carceral State in the 1970s

Muhammad Usama Rafi, The Anti-colonial Mind: Wulf Sach’s Black Hamlet and Psychiatry in Late Colonial Africa
11:30-12:00Coffee break
12:00-14:00Panel two- Migration and refugees Chair: Lamia Moghnieh

Baher Ibrahim, Uprooting, Trauma, and Confinement: Psychiatry in Refugee Camps

Mostafa Hosseini and Elisabeth Punzi, Afghan unaccompanied refugee minors and the need to problematize and challenge Western perspectives on ‘mental illness’: Results from a Swedish interview study
15:00-16:30Concluding remarks and final discussion: Future directions in transcultural psychiatry (Lamia, Romain and Ana)

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