Displacement, Trauma and Homeness: Mental Health among Rohingya Refugees in Bangladesh

Panel details

Panel organiser(s) will be presenting In-Person / Online
Number of paper presentations 4

Abstract

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Mental health issues are common among people who have experienced violence and forceful displacement, such as Rohingya people living in Bangladesh refugee camps. Along with other adverse impacts on their lives, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression and anxiety are common psychological problems that affect their everyday well-being (Riley et al., 2020, 2021).
One factor impacting psychological and social security is the loss of home and the sense of dispossession. Social science studies show the significance of psychosocial factors in refugees’ life experiences, such as displacement and fear of return, traumatic memories, attachment to place/home and nostalgia (Fazel et al., 2012; Khan, 2017), which could trigger mental distress and anxiety (Haque, 2018). The uncertainty of sustainable and dignified repatriation to their ‘home’ and limited possibilities for integration or social cohesion within the host community are fundamental issues affecting their well-being and security (Siddiqi, 2022).
This panel calls for anthropological and sociological insights from academics, practitioners, early career researchers, and doctoral candidates. Potential topics include theoretical and policy analysis on mental health among Rohingya people, including questions such as what is the mental health impact of displacement and exile for the Rohingya? How do fear and frustration in returning home and the challenges of integrating into the host country affect their wellbeing? How do Rohingya people perceive their ‘home’ and/or ‘feel at home’ in camps, including those born there? How do they build community within the camps, and what resources do they draw on to sustain their wellbeing? How can a mentally comfortable and practical sense of ‘home’ in camps be provided?

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