Islamophobia: Social, Religious, and Clinical Considerations from a Jewish Psychiatrist
For culturally competent caring, a Jewish psychiatrist perspective on Islamophobia needs to include several components. The first is an appreciation for the psychiatrist’s own Jewish identity and related values, especially as they pertain to being a psychiatrist. The second is an appreciation for the relevant history of interactions between the Jewish and Muslim peoples. A third is a basic understanding of Islamophobia and how it developed. Weaving together these aspects should lead to concern on the part of the Jewish psychiatrist for the harm that Islamophobia in particular can do to Muslim citizens, to Muslims who have mental illness, to other people, and to the therapeutic alliance between Muslim patients and Jewish psychiatrists, let alone other non-Muslim psychiatrists. Finally, comparing histories of the Jewish and Muslim people, including within psychiatry, should lead to an appreciation of the relationship of Islamophobia to Antisemitism and how together we can complement one another’s efforts to improve our people’s mental health. Indeed, we psychiatrists are bound by our ethical standards to do so.
KeywordsAntisemitism Cultural competence Ethical Freud Islamophobia Jewish psychiatrists Maimonides Therapeutic alliance Trauma
- 1.Riba M. Culture, diversity, and the therapeutic alliance: how can psychiatrists contribute to the discussion? Psychiatr Times. 2017;4.Google Scholar
- 2.Hafez F. Comparing anti-semitism and islamophobia: the state of the field. Islamopohobia Stud J. 2016;3(2):16–34.Google Scholar
- 4.Plaut WG. The Torah: a modern commentary. New York: The Union of American Jewish Congregations; 1981.Google Scholar
- 5.Salovey P. Strangers in a strange land: the baccalaureate address. Yale Alumni Magazine. 2017; July/August. 43–47.Google Scholar
- 6.Jauhar S. Empathy gadgets. The New York Times, Sunday Review Section. 2017; July 30, 10.Google Scholar
- 7.Freud S. The interpretation of dreams. New York: Basic Books; 2010.Google Scholar
- 8.Jews LJ. Christians, and the abode of Islam: modern scholarship, medieval realities. Chicago: University of Chicago Press; 2012.Google Scholar
- 9.Korobko Y. Arabs in treatment: development of mental health system and psychoanalysis in the Arab-Islamic world. Xlibis US, Amazon Digital Services LLC; 2016.Google Scholar
- 10.Kumar D. Islamophobia and the politics of empire. Chicago: Haymarket Books, Chicago; 2012.Google Scholar
- 11.Moffic HS. It’s the relationships (as Buber might say), stupid! Behavioral Healthcare. https://www.behavioral.net/blogs/mira/its-relationships-buber-might-say-stupid. Posted Aug 17, 2010.
- 13.Poussaint A. Is extreme racism a mental illness? Clinical Psychiatry News. 2015; August. 8.Google Scholar
- 14.King D. The trial of Adolf Hitler. New York: Norton; 2017.Google Scholar
- 16.Ahmed T. The protective cloak of Islamophilia: Islam needs more criticism, not less. Features Australia. The Spectator. 2016; June 15.Google Scholar
- 18.Moffic HS. American Muslims, mosques, and mental healthcare. Behavioral Healthcare. https://www.behavioral.net/print/blogs/mira/american-muslims-mosques-and-mental-healthcare. Posted Sept 7, 2010.
- 19.Moffic HS. Get to know the Muslim culture. Behavioral Healthcare. http://www.behavioral.net/blogs/h-steven-moffic/get-to-know-muslim-culture. Posted Dec 30, 2015.
- 20.Moffic HS. Should we reach out to American Muslims on 9/11? Behavioral Healthcare. http://www.behavioral.net/blogs/h-steven-moffic/ethics/should-we-reach-out-american-muslims-911. Posted Sept 8, 2016.
- 23.Nadal K, et al. Subtle and overt forms of Islamophobia: microaggressions toward Muslim Americans. J Muslim Meant H. 2012;6(2):15–37.Google Scholar
- 27.Clay R. Islamophobia: psychologists are studying the impact of anti-Muslim sentiment and exploring ways to prevent it. Am Psychol Assoc Monitor. 2017;48(4):34.Google Scholar
- 28.American Psychiatric Association. Principles of medical ethics, with annotations especially applicable to Psychiatry. Arlington: American Psychiatric Association; 2013 edition.Google Scholar