Cultural Anxieties: Managing Migrant Suffering in France

Cultural Anxieties: Managing Migrant Suffering in France

by Stephanie Larchanche


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Cultural Anxieties is a gripping ethnography about Centre Minkowska, a transcultural psychiatry clinic in Paris, France. From her unique position as both observer and staff member, anthropologist Stéphanie Larchanché explores the challenges of providing non-stigmatizing mental healthcare to migrants. In particular, she documents how restrictive immigration policies, limited resources, and social anxieties about the “other” combine to constrain the work of state social and health service providers who refer migrants to the clinic and who tend to frame "migrant suffering" as a problem of integration that requires cultural expertise to address. In this context, Larchanché describes how staff members at Minkowska struggle to promote cultural competence, which offers a culturally and linguistically sensitive approach to care while simultaneously addressing the broader structural factors that impact migrants’ mental health. Ultimately, Larchanché identifies practical routes for improving caregiving practices and promoting hospitality—including professional training, action research, and advocacy.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780813595375
Publisher: Rutgers University Press
Publication date: 03/13/2020
Series: Medical Anthropology Series
Pages: 240
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Stéphanie Larchanché is the research and studies department coordinator at Centre Minkowska in Paris, and a lecturer at Université Paris Descartes and Sigmund Freud University. She lives in Saint Denis, France.

Table of Contents

Foreword Lenore Manderson ix

List of Abbreviations xiii

Introduction 1

A Day at Centre Minkowska 19

Part I The Context

1 A Genealogy of "Migrant Suffering" 33

2 Transcultural Practice at Centre Minkowska 56

Part II Referral Narratives and Ethical Double Binds

3 Cultural and Linguistic Difference as Obstacles to Care 79

4 Managing "Migrant Youth" 103

Part III Ethical Deliberations

5 Enacting Cultural Competence 131

6 Psychotherapy at the Borderland 148

7 Beyond Anxieties: Praxis 176

Conclusion 187

Acknowledgments 189

Notes 193

References 199

Index 213

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