The General Model of Culturally Competent Family Therapy: A Brief Outline
The line of reasoning presented above has led to developing a general, integrative model of culturally competent family therapy. This book constitutes an introduction to this model. The following is a brief summary of its main sources, its chief contents and the conceptual-terminological framework within which these contents have been explicated and systematized.
As explained in chapter 1, culturally competent family therapy requires the therapist to attend to culture-bound characteristics of the family's thinking and behavior throughout the therapeutic process. Many such characteristics are discussed in the culturally sensitive family therapy literature, surveyed in appendix 1. This literature, however, has not taken into account numerous relevant ideas and observations studied intensively in other fields. A wealth of pertinent materials had been waiting to be discovered in such fields as social and cultural anthropology, sociology of the family, cross- cultural social psychology, cross-cultural psychiatry, communication and linguistics.
A major area of research in social and cultural anthropology is family ecology. Studies in this area investigate culture-specific modes adopted by families in their attempts to adapt themselves to the environment in which they live. A subarea of studies of this category is coping with ecological change. Culture-bound modes of reacting to changes in the physical and social environment are described and explained. Works of this kind have adopted an ecological perspective (see Bell, 1992; Geertz, 1983, 1995; Harris, 1983).