chapter  1
39 Pages

Methodological Considerations in Social Psychiatry

ByMarvin K. Opler

IN ADVANCING social psychiatry beyond its present range of knowledge, the striking results in epidemiology, now limited to scattered and exotic parts of the world, must be extended to contemporary Western cultures. When Western studies of epidemiology are reviewed critically, the lack of articulation and significant connection between clinical studies on the one hand and sociocultural studies on the other is notable. At the outset, one is forced to agree with a recent statement by Felix and Bowers that the search for environmental factors has not yielded, as yet, any full understanding of their importance. 18 In only a few studies have psychiatrists and social scientists collaborated at all, in fewer still has this collaboration been aimed at the contemporary urban scene, and in only a mere handful has this collaborative effort involved fully the special techniques of each discipline.