ERIC Number: ED040414
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1970
Reference Count: 0
Community Mental Health as a Pacification Program.
Statman, James M.
Community mental health programs are examined in terms of the political function which the author sees them as serving. The evaluation was drawn in the context of a community undergoing rapid social change, viz. the urban ghetto. The comprehensive community mental health approach was viewed as part of the white response to the increasing militancy of the minority people who inhabit the ghetto. Three interrelated questions are the focus of the analysis: (1) does the "mental health" effort serve to divert community resources from more meaningful efforts? (2) does the employment of neighborhood leaders in "paraprofessional" jobs serve to alienate these leaders from their community, thereby weakening the neighborhood power base? and (3) are federally funded programs free to confront the basic oppressive institutions in our society? On all three counts the author concludes that community mental health serves a repressive function by diverting community energies from their primary task, their own freedom. The intropsychic approach in an oppressed community mystifies, pacifies, and continues the oppression of the individual. (TL)
Descriptors: Community Development, Community Leaders, Community Organizations, Community Problems, Community Services, Culture Conflict, Disadvantaged, Indigenous Personnel, Mental Health, Mental Health Clinics, Mental Health Programs, Psychiatric Services, Public Agencies, Public Health, Social Problems
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Catholic Univ. of America, Washington, DC. School of Education.