Enpa -- European Network for Psychological Anthropology (ENPA)


About Enpa
English (USA)


Psychological anthropology played a crucial role in the early life of our discipline. The German "Völkerpsychologie", the North American "Culture and Personality School", and the British "Torres Strait Expeditions" all made important methodical, theoretical and transdisciplinary contributions to the broader anthropological project, whether through furthering our understanding of human socialisation and the relationship between persons and sociocultural environments, or through illuminating the emotional-affective, cognitive and physical ways in which persons relate to self and others. Since then, methodological, theoretical and conceptual approaches of psychological anthropology have moved into rich new fields, becoming increasingly concerned with power asymmetries, critical epistemologies, and the social and human effects of universalising 'Western' psychologies. In the face of growing human and cultural interconnectedness, contemporary psychological anthropology has fostered important insights into new forms of inequality and structural violence in local and global contexts, into changing forms of human subjectivity, and into how different emotions, affects and behaviours are understood, managed and responded to in diverse settings. Today, as the global political economy becomes more multi-polar, the assumption that psychological and bio-psychiatric 'insights', predominantly produced in the 'West', are to be imposed on other social groups, is itself now open to question, creating new tensions between universalising and relativising understandings of the human condition that psychological anthropology is uniquely positioned to address. Psychological anthropology has, in its more recent instantiations, broadly rejected the universalising tendencies of psychological discourse, preferring to illuminate historically and socio-culturally situated concepts of self, personhood and what it means to be human. In short, psychological anthropology had broadly avoided postulating the 'psyche' as an a priori given, rather understanding how different cultural understandings of 'psyche' and 'self' affect individual and social behavior and experience. This critical perspective at times conflicts with some of mainstream psychology's key assumptions, according to which human beings are subjected to universal psychological patterns of feeling, thinking and interacting. However, rather than only aiming to refute such perspectives, psychological anthropology seeks to scrutinise, relativise and contextualise them, thereby encouraging fruitful dialogue and exchange with neighboring disciplines such as cultural psychology, transcultural psychiatry, neuro-anthropology, developmental psychology, philosophy, psychotherapy and bio-psychiatry (to only name a few).

The network (ENPA) was founded by Dr James Davies, Dr Keir Martin and Dr Thomas Stodulka in January 2018.


Until now, no European network for the development and support of psychological anthropology has existed. The ENPA therefore constitutes the first such forum for theoretical, methodological and empirical work in psychological anthropology. As the number of anthropologists with psychological interests continues to grow in Europe, a coordinated European network has become imperative; one aiming to sustain and nurture teaching, research and student supervision in this area, as well as providing a vehicle through which impact on related public health policies can be facilitated.

To see the collection of prior postings to the list, visit the Enpa Archives. (The current archive is only available to the list members.)

Using Enpa
To post a message to all the list members, send email to enpa@lists.easaonline.org.

You can subscribe to the list, or change your existing subscription, in the sections below.

Subscribing to Enpa

Subscribe to Enpa by filling out the following form. You will be sent email requesting confirmation, to prevent others from gratuitously subscribing you. This is a private list, which means that the list of members is not available to non-members.

    Your email address:  
    Your name (optional):  
    You may enter a privacy password below. This provides only mild security, but should prevent others from messing with your subscription. Do not use a valuable password as it will occasionally be emailed back to you in cleartext.

    If you choose not to enter a password, one will be automatically generated for you, and it will be sent to you once you've confirmed your subscription. You can always request a mail-back of your password when you edit your personal options.
    Pick a password:  
    Reenter password to confirm:  
    Which language do you prefer to display your messages? English (USA)  
    Would you like to receive list mail batched in a daily digest? No Yes
Enpa Subscribers
(The subscribers list is only available to the list members.)

Enter your address and password to visit the subscribers list:

Address: Password:   

To unsubscribe from Enpa, get a password reminder, or change your subscription options enter your subscription email address:

If you leave the field blank, you will be prompted for your email address

Enpa list run by web at easaonline.org, hodges at ios-regensburg.de
Enpa administrative interface (requires authorization)

Delivered by Mailman
version 2.1.23
Python Powered GNU's Not Unix