Accepted Paper:

Translating Fanon in the Italian context: rethinking the ethics of treatment in psychiatry  

Author:

Cristiana Giordano (University of California, Davis)

Paper short abstract:

This paper addresses the clinical practice of a group of ethno-psychiatrists at the Centro Fanon (Italy), a clinic that offers psycho-social support to migrants, and puts it in conversation with the works of Franco Basaglia, Frantz Fanon, and Tobie Nathan.

Paper long abstract:

In this paper, I reflect upon the clinical practice of a group of ethno-psychiatrists at the Centro Frantz Fanon, a clinic in Northern Italy that offers psycho-social support to migrants, political refugees, and torture and human trafficking victims. My aim is twofold: 1) to situate the clinical practice of ethno-psychiatrists at this Centro within the larger landscapes of Italian psychiatry and medical anthropology by turning to the work of Franco Basaglia and Ernesto de Martino, and to the theories of domination and culture developed by Frantz Fanon and Tobie Nathan (both authors and mental health practitioners who serve as models for the clinical work at the Centro); 2) to reflect upon ethno-psychiatry as a contested field that raises a series of complex questions about mental health, citizenship, identity, and thus opens up the possibility to rethink clinical work as a mode of politics, for both foreign and Italian patients alike.

Panel W106
Crisis and resolution: imagination and the transformation of psychiatric care