Authors: Iokapeta Sina Enoka
Event: 2001 TheMHS Conference
Subject: book of proceedings, FAMILY FOCUS MODEL, SAMOA, TRANSCULTURAL MENTAL HEALTH, CLINICAL NURSE, SOUTH PACIFIC ISLANDER
Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers
Abstract: Mental illness is culturally defined, yet mental disease occurs in all societies. An understanding of mental illness from a cultural perspective reveals a much clearer picture of mental illness in South Pacific Island communities. For example, attempts to understand mental illness in Samoa from western perspective alone defeats the realisation of the belief about the interweaving physical, spiritual and mental dimension of a Samoan being which cannot be separated. Also, an understanding of the condition called “avanga” in Tonga can only be enhanced through learning and appreciation of the traditional beliefs and values of the Tongan community in relation to mental illness.
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