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  • Ignacio Martín-Baró I.

Political Violence and War as Causes of Psychosocial Trauma in El Salvador

Moving away from the western psychology conceptualization of individual trauma, Martín-Baró developed the concept of "psychosocial trauma" to explain trauma as a societal wound rather than an intra-psychic feature and to draw attention to the fact that the whole nation's social fabric was injured by oppression.

Consequently, individually based interventions that address only the needs of a few individuals among those affected and leave communities unattended are not suitable to deal with core imbalances resulting from societal fractures and oppressive social environments.

Finally, Martín-Baró suggests that "psychosocial trauma can be a normal consequence of a social system based on social relations of explotation and dehumanizing oppression, such as those in wartime.

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