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A Descriptive Study of a Native African Mental Health Problem Known in Zimbabwe as zvirwere zvechivanhu

Description: This is a study conducted in Zimbabwe which compared a group of 50 zvirvere zvechivanhu patients and a group of 50 non-patients in age, sex, marital status, level of education and claims of spirit possession. Claims of spirit possessions and types of spirits, as pointed out by Bennel (1982), were used as symptoms of zvirwere zvechivanhu. The two groups were also compared in symptom dimensions of the SCL-90-R used in the study. The SCL-90-R, developed by Derogatis (1975), is a 90-item symptom check list used to screen people for psychological problems reflected in the nine symptom dimensions of somatization, obsessive/ compulsive, interpersonal sensitivity, depression, anxiety, hostility, phobic anxiety, paranoid ideation, psychoticism and in the three global scores of Global Severity Index, Positive Symptom Distress Index and Positive Symptom Total. The subjects were chosen from two different sites, using a systematic sampling method. Three statistical methods were used to analyze the data. The Chi-square was used to analyze data on descriptive variables. The T-test and 2 x 2 analysis of variance were used to analyze the data on symptom dimensions and global scores. The study had one main hypothesis and nine subhypotheses. The main hypothesis was that zvirwere zvechivanhu patients were significantly different from the non-patients on the overall global scores. The nine subhypotheses stated that the patient and non-patient groups were significantly different in the nine separate symptom dimensions. The study concluded that the zvirwere zvechivanhu patients were significantly different from the non-patients in the overall global scores. In the nine separate symptom dimensions, it was concluded that the two groups were the same in all except the somatization and obsessive/compulsive system dimensions.
Date: August 1990
Creator: Mungadze, Jerry Jesphat
Partner: UNT Libraries