NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
ERIC Number: ED526016
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 100
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1096-8911-2
Use of Indigenous African Healing Practices as a Mental Health Intervention
Ojelade, Ifetayo Iyajoke
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Georgia State University
The purpose of this qualitative study was to describe the ways in which Orisa priests and their clients conceptualize issues and concerns described by Western based approaches as mental health problems. The two research questions guiding this inquiry included: (a) how do Orisa priests and their clients conceptualize issues and concerns associated with mental health problems in Western psychology and (b) what methods and techniques do Orisa priests and their clients use to address issues or concerns associated with mental health problems in Western psychology? This study was grounded in African-centered theory by providing a cultural lens to guide the research design, data collection, and analysis. Data were collected during semi-structured individual interviews with four Orisa priests in a three phase model, for a total of 12 interviews. The study also included three focus groups (six informants per group), who did not participate in the individual interviews. Each group met for two sessions, for a total of six focus groups. Bracketing of assumptions by research team members and use of a reflexive journal was used to ensure credibility and dependability of the data (Creswell, 1998). Data analysis consisted of a recursive process divided into multiple steps, to help strengthen methodological rigor and verification of study procedures. The three part process included codebook development, code application, and data analysis. Three major themes emerged from the data. The first theme, The Conceptualization of Mental Health Problems as Spiritual Matters included one subtheme, Transgenerational Transmission. The second theme, Origins of Mental Health Problems, included three subthemes (Western Socialization, Spiritual Forces, and Ifa as a Healing System). The final theme, Addressing Mental Health Problems, included three subthemes (The Divination Process, Referrals, and Western Therapy). Results of this study indicate that respondents primarily conceptualize mental health problems as spiritual matters and seek to address these problems with the help of an Orisa priest. In addition, some respondents sought the services of a Western trained therapist for the same issue. Practice and research implications are discussed. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Africa