Positive mental health and wellbeing
White, Sarah C.
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White, S.C. and Eyber, C. (2017) ‘Positive mental health and wellbeing’, in R.G. White, S. Jain, D.M.R. Orr, and U.M. Read (eds) The Palgrave Handbook of Sociocultural Perspectives on Global Mental Health. London: Palgrave Macmillan UK, pp. 129–150. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-137-39510-8_7.
The past 20 years have seen an explosion of interest in positive approaches to mental health, happiness, and wellbeing. While these concepts vary considerably from one another, they act as bridges between Global Mental Health and the broader arena of national and international policymaking. This chapter begins by sketching out some of the trajectories across different academic and policy fields that have contributed to this field and provides a critical discussion of the key concepts of ‘subjective wellbeing’ and ‘psychological wellbeing’. It then considers two very different ways that positive approaches are being pursued in policy and practice in the Global South: psychosocial wellbeing in the context of disasters and humanitarian crises, and political mobilisation around notions of ‘living well’ in Latin America.