Multicultural Counseling Research Papers

Multicultural Counseling Research Papers-2
Calvinism stressed economic success as the hallmark of salvation, and psychology concurred. Eugenics spokesmen urged the elimination of the unfit and inferior and opposed welfare programs, decent wages, and safe working conditions.These views continue to be held today, although sometimes in more subtle forms.First, reality is defined according to one set of cultural assumptions.

Calvinism stressed economic success as the hallmark of salvation, and psychology concurred. Eugenics spokesmen urged the elimination of the unfit and inferior and opposed welfare programs, decent wages, and safe working conditions.These views continue to be held today, although sometimes in more subtle forms.First, reality is defined according to one set of cultural assumptions.

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Counseling is a product of Western cultures whose values have continued to dominate the counseling profession through the imposition of cultural assumptions as counseling services have spread to other cultures, demonstrating the generic centrality of culture to achieve competence in the counseling process.

Because all behaviors are learned and displayed in a cultural context, accurate assessment, meaningful understanding, and appropriate intervention require consideration of the cultural context when providing counseling services.

This will demonstrate how shared positive expectations (e.g., safety, respect, fairness) might be expressed by very different behaviors and how similar behaviors (e.g., direct/indirect, loud/ quiet) across cultures might be linked to very different expectations in a two-dimensional ‘‘cultural grid.’’ The connection between counseling and culture can be described visually in a cultural grid that includes individual behavior, expectations, and values on one dimension and the ‘‘culture teachers’’ of those individual characteristics on the other dimension.

The cultural grid, as described by Pedersen in 2000, is an attempt to demonstrate the personal–cultural orientation of the individual in relationship to the many different cultures to which that individual belongs.

Fifth, most providers come from a majority culture, whereas most clients are members of minority cultures.

If the standard practices of mental health services are themselves encapsulated, as suggested by the NAMHC report, these cultural biases will certainly influence the practical applications of psychology through counseling and therapy.First, anthropological and cross-cultural research has demonstrated that cultural beliefs influence the diagnosis and treatment of mental illness.Second, the diagnosis of mental illness differs across cultures.Making the consumer’s cultural context central rather than marginal when providing psychodynamic, behavioral, and humanistic services strengthens those traditional counseling perspectives.However, because counseling first developed as a field in a Euro-American cultural context, counseling typically reflects Euro-American assumptions in textbooks, theories, tests, ethical guidelines, methods, and other services.Table I describes 10 examples of these assumptions that Pedersen used in 2002 to demonstrate their pervasive influence in applications of counseling.TABLE I Western Cultural Assumptions in Counseling One way in which to challenge the universal application of dominant culture perspectives, regardless of the cultural context, is to separate behaviors from expectations in counseling.The purpose of this research paper is to discuss the generic importance of making cultural context central rather than marginal to the counseling process.In 1996, a report by the Basic Behavioral Science Task Force of the National Advisory Mental Health Council (NAMHC) documented the extent of cultural encapsulation of mental health services.Counseling has typically assumed that there is a fixed state of mind that is obscured by cultural distortions and that relate behaviors across cultures to some universal definition of normative behavior described in textbooks.A contrasting anthropological perspective assumes that cultural differences are clues to divergent attitudes, values, or perspectives that differentiate one culture from another based on a culture-specific viewpoint.

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