Interview with Mugur Ciumâgeanu--February 17, 2017

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Interview with Mugur Ciumâgeanu, Romanian psy-professional, specializing in psychology, psychiatry, psychotherapy as well as policy making. The interview was conducted in Vienna, Austria, on February 17, 2017. Ciumâgeanu attended a German high school in Timișoara and after graduation went to medical school in Timișoara where he studied general medicine. Later he also received a doctorate in psychiatry there, as well as a masters in psychiatric anthropology at Paris 7, a masters in special education at Timișoara. Starting in 2002, he practiced clinical psychology in Bucharest, and from 2006-2008 he served as head of the Romanian National Center for Mental Health (Centrului Național de Sănătate Mintală). He now works as a private psychotherapist, specializing in cognitive behavioral therapy, and also teaches at the University of Timișoara in the Psychology Department, and serves as chair of the department of Psychopathology and Clinical Psychology.

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Interview themes 00:00 Introduction 01:10 How Ciumâgeanu became interested in psychiatry (on being born into a psychiatric hospital) 6:00 On Ciumâgeanu's father, Dumitru Ciumâgeanu, his career, reputation, and political views 11:10 On the institution in Păclișa (Spitalul de Neuro-Psihiatrie Infantilă Păclișa) where his parents worked and where Ciumâgeanu spent his early years 15:45 More on Dumitru Ciumâgeanu's life, work, and politics 17:45 On how his father related to the Ceaușescu regime 20:20 On Ciumâgeanu's grandparents, especially his paternal grandfather and maternal grandparents (marital politics, Orthodox priesthood, membership in the Iron Guard, vampire stories and rituals of the dead [and undead] in the village) 40:10 How Ciumâgeanu now relates to rituals of the (un)dead in which he participated as a child from the standpoint of a psy-professional 44:25 The German school in Timișoara Ciumâgeanu attended and the atmosphere in the town at the time (late 1970s-1980s) 49:00 How his family experienced the official ban on psychology of 1978 55:30 On how Ciumâgeanu's family became (temporarily) Jewish 58:45 Are there mental conditions unique to or common among Romanians and/or Central-Eastern Europeans of the time? (boală de curent, suppression of anger, socialization to envy) 1:08:40 Experience heading the Romanian National Center of Mental Health (Centrului Național de Sănătate Mintală), 2006-2008. 1:16:20 Lessons drawn from the experience working for the Romanian government 1:27:50 On the history of various therapeutic interventions in Romania (as compared with other countries in the region) 1:36:30 Popularity of the New German Psychotherapy derived by the National Socialist Johannes Heinrich Schultz (and on the post-1989 proliferation of therapeutic methods and their uncritical reception in Romania) 1:42:35 Ciumâgeanu's exposure to and interest in the ideas of anti-psychiatry (his father's temporary period of "madness") 1:54:15 Can development of the critical capacity negatively impact the effectiveness of therapeutic interventions? 2:00:30 How Ciumâgeanu teaches psychiatry and psychology now 2:03:15 Notable trends in the way students approach the field now (preparation, proclivities, capacities) 2:10:20 On the experience of Ciumâgeanu's mother, personal and professional 2:17:55 What Ciumâgeanu would like to focus on next 2:19:50 Ciumâgeanu's concerns about developments in neuroscience and the potential for manipulative intervention


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Romania; Psychology; Psychiatry


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