This groundbreaking book demonstrates the importance of cross-cultural communication to psychotherapy, psychoanalysis and counselling. It gives an introduction to anthropological issues which are relevant to cross-cultural work, examining practical as well as conceptual aspects of culture. The book provides an overview and gives examples on which clinicians may draw to enhance their understanding of their clients, and which will help anthropologists to understand and interpret the personal circumstances of their informants.
Complex theories from ethnography and anthropology are explained and made accessible, while kinship, attachment and emotion, ritual and taboo are explored, illuminating how the cultural content of patterns of interaction and behaviour are expressed in ideas, feelings, attitudes and inclinations. Finally, it is argued that cross-cultural communication must originate in the therapist or anthropologist taking responsibility for becoming aware of his or her own assumptions as a starting point for cross-cultural work.