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The doctor's medicine and the ambiguity of amulets: life and suffering among Bangladeshi psychiatric patients and their families in London - an interview study - 1

Littlewood, R; Dein, S; (2013) The doctor's medicine and the ambiguity of amulets: life and suffering among Bangladeshi psychiatric patients and their families in London - an interview study - 1. Anthropology & Medicine , 20 (3) 244 - 263. 10.1080/13648470.2013.827427. Green open access

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Abstract

An interview study of 44 Bangladeshi patients and relatives in London demonstrated simultaneous trust in psychiatrists as well as in the widespread use of healing amulets. At the same time, local Islamic clerics and traditional healers were seen by many with some degree of suspicion. The authors offer an interpretation in which local healers and their methods are regarded ambivalently: the more distant biomedical framework fits with the newer modernising 'High' Islam (literate, scripturalist, puritanical, unitarian, urban, clerical, perhaps masculinist), as opposed to Hindu-inflected traditional Sufi Islam in Bangladesh (peasant, popular, syncretic, saintly, magical, ecstatic and possibly more sympathetic to women's experience).

Type: Article
Title: The doctor's medicine and the ambiguity of amulets: life and suffering among Bangladeshi psychiatric patients and their families in London - an interview study - 1
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/13648470.2013.827427
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13648470.2013.827427
Language: English
Additional information: © 2013 The Author(s). Published by Taylor & Francis. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The moral rights of the named author(s) have been asserted. Permission is granted subject to the terms of the License under which the work was published. Please check the License conditions for the work which you wish to reuse. Full and appropriate attribution must be given. This permission does not cover any third party copyrighted material which may appear in the work requested.
Keywords: Adolescent, Adult, Aged, Attitude to Health, Bangladesh, Culture, Family, Female, Humans, Interviews as Topic, Islam, London, Male, Medicine, Traditional, Mental Disorders, Middle Aged, Psychiatry, Trust, Young Adult
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Division of Psychiatry
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Anthropology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1461154
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