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Kirmayer, Laurence J. MD



I am a cultural psychiatrist with a background in psychology and
anthropology. I have a wide range of research and clinical interests, including: the cultural roots of self, emotion and illness experience, processes of somatization and dissociation, and varieties of healing. I work with indigenous peoples and refugees in Canada, and internationally with colleagues in Singapore, Nepal and Japan. I am Professor and Director of the Division of Social and Transcultural Psychiatry at McGill University where I edit the journal Transcultural Psychiatry (Sage, UK) and direct an annual summer program and Advanced Study Institute in Cultural Psychiatry.


Selected Publications

Kirmayer, L.J., Fung, K., Rousseau, C., Lo, H.T., Menzies, P., Guzder, J., Ganesan, S., Andermann, L., and McKenzie, K. (2012). Guidelines for Training in Cultural PsychiatryPosition Paper. The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, Vol 57, No 3, insert 1-17. PDF

Adeponle, A., Whitley, R., and Kirmayer, L.J. (2012). Chapter 8Cultural contexts and constructions of recovery, OUP UNCORRECTED PROOF – FPP, 30/04/2012, CENVEO. 109-132. PDF

Kirmayer, L. J., & Gold, I. (2012). Re-socializing psychiatry: Critical
neuroscience and the limits of reductionism. In S. Choudhury & J. Slaby (Eds.), Critical Neuroscience: A Handbook of the Social and Cultural Contexts of Neuroscience. Oxford: Blackwell.

Kirmayer, L. J. (2012). Rethinking cultural competence. [Editorial].
Transcult Psychiatry, 49(2), 149-164. doi: 10.1177/1363461512444673.

Kirmayer, L. J. (2012). Cultural competence and evidence-based practice in mental health: Epistemic communities and the politics of pluralism. Soc Sci Med, 75(2), 249-256. doi: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2012.03.018 PDF

Kirmayer, L. J. (2012). Culture and context in human rights. In M. Dudley, D. Silove & F. Gale (Eds.), Mental Health and Human Rights: Vision, Praxis and Courage (pp. 95-112). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Kirmayer, L. J., Dandeneau, S., Marshall, E., Phillips, M. K., & Williamson, K. J. (2011). Rethinking resilience from indigenous perspectives. Canadian journal of psychiatry, 56(2), 84-91. PDF

Kirmayer, L. J. (2011). Multicultural medicine and the politics of
recognition. J Med Philos, 36(4), 410-423. doi: 10.1093/jmp/jhr024 PDF

Kirmayer, L. J. (2011). Unpacking the placebo response: Insights from ethnographic studies of healing. Journal of Mind-Body Regulation, 1(3), 112-124.

Gone, J. P., & Kirmayer, L. J. (2010). On the wisdom of considering culture and context in psychopathology. In T. Millon, R. F. Krueger & E. Simonsen (Eds.), Contemporary Directions in Psychopathology: Scientific Foundations of the DSM-V and ICD-11 (pp. 72-96). New York: Guilford. PDF

Kirmayer, L. J., Brass, G. M., & Valaskakis, G. G. (2008). Conclusion: Healing / Invention / Tradition. In L. J. Kirmayer & G. Valaskakis (Eds.), Healing Traditions: The Mental Health of Aboriginal Peoples in Canada (pp. 440-472). Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press. PDF

Rousseau, C. and Kirmayer, L. J. (2009) Cultural Adaptation of Psychological Trauma Treatment for Children, Letters to the Editor, J . AM. ACAD. CHILD ADOLESC PSYCHIATRY, 48:9, 954-956 PDF

Kirmayer, L. J., Sehdev, M., Whitley, R., Dandeneau, S.F., and Isaac C. (2009) Community Resilience: Models, Metaphors and Measures. Journal de la santé autochtone, 62-117. PDF

Seligman, R., & Kirmayer, L. J. (2008). Dissociative experience and cultural neuroscience: narrative, metaphor and mechanism. Cult Med Psychiatry, 32(1), 31-64.

Kirmayer, L. J., & Valaskakis, G. G. (eds.). (2008). Healing Traditions:
The Mental Health of Aboriginal Peoples in Canada. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press.

Kirmayer, L. J., Lemelson, R., & Barad, M. (eds.) (2007). Understanding trauma : integrating biological, clinical, and cultural perspectives. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Kirmayer, L. J. (2007) Psychotherapy and the Cultural Concept of the Person, transcultural psychiatry, 44(2): 232–257 DOI: 10.1177/1363461506070794 PDF