Date of Award

Spring 5-18-2024

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Raquel Stephenson


This literature review focuses on how the arts in therapeutic practice can be utilized to enhance the well-being and mental health of the identified population of Filipino-Americans. This literature review explores the culture of origin of the Philippines, reviewing the country's history with colonization and contemporary influences, the outlook of mental health, and the quality and access to treatment. Filipino values are also examined in connection to the human condition, in addition to the roles of the arts in culture, as well as how Filipino-Americans navigate mental health challenges. This includes the culture created from the Filipino identity in the United States, as well as the experiences that rise in finding balance between the two cultures in everyday life. Data collection includes both academic and non-academic literature and other media forms to incorporate as much relevant information as possible, with key terms including Philippines, Filipino, Filipino-American, mental health in the Philippines, and art therapy.

The findings revealed that the arts integrated in treatment connects to the culture’s inherent attunement to nature and addresses holistic needs. The integration of the arts also presents a modality that continues on the culture’s resilience through colonialism, in which an approach such as cognitive-behavioral therapy would continue the progression towards decolonization in challenging thought processes stemming from colonial mentality. As Filipinos are also naturally connected to one another in community, findings revealed that humanistic approaches would provide the most compatible care in centering on interrelationships and validating lived experiences through family and narrative therapy.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.




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