A Reflection on Global Art Therapy and Socio-Political Justice

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Carolyn Krueger


Drawing from art therapy literature relating to cultural diversity and socio-political justice, as well as from my personal experience as a white German practitioner, in this text I explore the potential role of art therapy in the context of global mental health provision. The paper considers the impact of Western psychological concepts on therapeutic settings, and power dynamics between different countries and cultures, and suggests the relevance of non-Western and Indigenous knowledge and practices for mental health when working in diverse communities. A past project in Nepal will be examined in the light of relevant art therapy literature, and through this, the paper explores the role of art and art therapy in promoting socio-political justice and different cultural approaches to mental wellbeing and healing.

Keywords: art therapy, global mental health, socio-political justice, cultural diversity, psychosocial, Nepal

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