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Supple bodies, healthy minds: yoga, psychedelics and American mental health
  1. Lucas Richert1,
  2. Matthew DeCloedt2
  1. 1 Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, UK
  2. 2 Central European University, Budapest, Hungary
  1. Correspondence to Dr Lucas Richert, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow G4 0LT, UK ; lucasrichert{at}


Much discussion about mental health has revolved around treatment models. As interdisciplinary scholarship has shown, mental health knowledge, far from being a neutral product detached from the society that generated it, was shaped by politics, economics and culture. By drawing on case studies of yoga, religion and fitness, this article will examine the ways in which mental health practices—sometimes scientific, sometimes spiritual—have been conceived, debated and applied by researchers and the public. More specifically, it will interrogate the relationship between yoga, psychedelics, South Asian and Eastern religion (as understood and practiced in the USA) and mental health.

  • psychiatry
  • psychology
  • arts In health/arts and health

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  • Contributors Both authors contributed to the conception and design of the article, the collection of data, drafting of the article and critical revisions.

  • Funding Wellcome Trust Investigator Award 200394/Z/15/Z, 2016-2020.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Correction notice This article has been corrected since it was published Online First. Reference 43 has been corrected.

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