Human rights and mental health among Latin American women in situations of state-sponsored violence. Bibliographic resources.

M. B. Lykes, Mary Brabeck, T. Ferns, A. Radan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The Task Force of the American Psychological Association Division 35, Psychology of Women, conducted a literature review of resources from Latin America to examine the social dimensions of state-sponsored violence in Latin America, their effects on socialization and community, and some responses of women surviving these experiences. It limited its review to works of women's groups, progressive organizations, and individual women exploring the effects of war and state-sponsored violence on women's mental health. Recurring emergent themes included the false dichotomy of violence committed against women in public versus that committed in private, silencing of women accompanies state imposed terror, collective resistance to such terror. The resources addressed 3 types of women's experiences of violence: exile within and beyond one's national borders; torture--an extreme form of state-sponsored violence; and nontraditional, culturally appropriate interventions--alternatives to Western models. This review motivated the Task Force to call on their colleagues to contribute to the on-going documentation of state-sponsored violence. Task Force members identified several areas for collaborative research and/or theory development. Psychologists should question the validity of clinical neutrality and examine the particular meanings of non-neutrality within different cultures. For example, some Latin American psychologists reject diagnoses of intrapsychic syndromes (e.g., post-traumatic stress syndrome) and propose concepts that center on the nexus of individuals and social life. The Task Force sees great opportunities for US psychologists to network and to form solidarity-based relationships with Latin American women. It has identified many women's groups working in Latin America. Human rights organizations (e.g., Americas Watch) have formed women's projects. Further work should be done to improve resource exchanges.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)525-544
Number of pages20
JournalPsychology of Women Quarterly
Volume17
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1993

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Violence
Mental Health
human rights
mental health
violence
resources
Advisory Committees
Latin America
Psychology
psychologist
Human Rights
Resources
Organizations
Torture
state terror
Socialization
national border
Women's Health
torture
neutrality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Gender Studies

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Human rights and mental health among Latin American women in situations of state-sponsored violence. Bibliographic resources. / Lykes, M. B.; Brabeck, Mary; Ferns, T.; Radan, A.

In: Psychology of Women Quarterly, Vol. 17, No. 4, 12.1993, p. 525-544.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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