Helidth Ravenholm is an anthropologist and a consultant. Her career started with a childhood interest in myth and, as she says herself, in “why people did things the way they did”. Alongside this stirring interest (she was five at the time), an interest for the past developed as soon as she became acquainted with archaeology (leading to her spending time “on a dig” in the sand pit). These passionate interests led to conducting early research in her teens, when, having spent her childhood looking up all she could about myth, folk tales and distant peoples, she began to form her own conclusions and collected all the possible data available to her at the time to feed that research.
Subsequently, she obtained a degree in archaeology and anthropology in her twenties, following it up with a postgraduate certificate in anthrozoology, while already deeply involved with terrain research in her own time; after her degrees, she began a freelancing career, conducting research in Eastern Europe. Shortly after starting on terrain, Ravenholm discovered that there was need in anthropology for further understanding of human behaviour, and began to take courses online in psychology, child psychology, forensics and other sciences. At the same time, her own research began to take on a turn that lead from the conventional academic anthropology and towards realisation that a client-compatible, real life science was much needed, and it was during those first steps that Ravenholm began to utilise her anthropological findings, alongside the principles set down by other anthropologists, as well as psychologists, in her first client consultations and in negotiation and work with informants on terrain.
Not long after, she opened her consultation business, which has been a success since its inception.
Ravenholm’s findings in terms of human behaviour continued, finally resulting in the start of anthropsychological principle of consultation*. This principle has been tried and tested in such rigorous cases as intercultural conflicts, cultism and even murder, as well as business and mental health issues.
While Culture Contact (now armed with nearly a decade of practical experience) acts as a discrete consultation business, Ravenholm’s articles have also appeared on public pages on several occasions, most notably where advocacy was the main aim of the piece. They also illustrated brilliantly the use of anthropology in interpretation of not only cultural, but also interpersonal conflicts.
Today, Ravenholm continues her research and her consultancy, while preparing her findings for publication. Her further hope is that there is a future for anthropsychology as a science, not only at the academic level, but in form of a new breed of anthropology, one that will exchange the purely theoretical for more realistic, people orientated approach.
To this day, her consulting approach with Culture Contact remains unique.
*the term anthropsychology was otherwise first used by Chris Bishop (1994, Killing the Lizard: Anthropsychology and Groupwork Therapy with Abusive Or Violently Dysfunctional Young Men); Ravenholm’s application of the term should not be mistaken with psychological anthropology and was developped independently, since the sciences differ in enough points to be seen as separate