Resilience and the Localisation of Trauma in Aceh, Indonesia

Catherine Smith

232 pp., 2 maps
Available from NIAS Press in Europe only




Paperback - 2017, Recently Published
ISBN 978-87-7694-232-8, £22.50


• Studies the long shadow of violence and how people deal with it.
• Promises to open up a valuable new perspective in Indonesian Studies.

The globalisation of psychiatry has helped shape the way suffering and recovery is experienced in Aceh, Indonesia, a region with a long history of violent conflict. In this book, Catherine Smith examines the global reach of the contested yet compelling concept of trauma, which has expanded well beyond the bounds of therapeutic practice to become a powerful cultural idiom shaping the ways social actors understand the effects of violence and imagine possible responses to suffering. In Aceh, conflict survivors have incorporated the globalised concept of trauma into local languages, healing practices and political imaginaries. The incorporation of this globalised idiom of distress into the Acehnese medical-moral landscape provides an ethnographic perspective on suffering and recovery, and contributes to contemporary debates about the globalisation of psychiatry and its ongoing expansion outside the domain of medicine.

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