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December 1959

Culture and Mental Disease, with Special Reference to Thailand

Author Affiliations

San Francisco
Read at the Annual Meeting of the California Medical Association, San Francisco, February, 1959.
Professor of Psychiatry, Emeritus, University of California School of Medicine.

AMA Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1959;1(6):593-599. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1959.03590060055005

The following ideas have been expressed regarding the occurrence of mental disease in different cultures: 1. Mental disease does or does not occur with the same incidence everywhere. 2. There are or are not variations in the incidence of specific types of mental disease in different cultures. 3. There are or are not variations in the symptomatology of some or all mental disorders in different cultures. A review of the literature shows that most writers limit themselves to one part of this problem and do not discuss all the possibilities mentioned above. A few authors, showing various studies and conclusions, are cited.

Lin,9 who did a thorough psychiatric and sociological survey of three Chinese cultures in Formosa for the period 1946-1948, inclusive, found that the incidence of major psychoses and epilepsy did not differ appreciably from that of other countries. On the basis

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