Culture shapes the experience of trauma and thus plays a major role in understanding and addressing it. Race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, and additional cultural affiliations serve as lenses through which people perceive, conceptualize, interpret, make meaning of, and respond to stressor events, as well as seek and use help. Historically, cultural and traumatic aspects of human experiences have been addressed separately. However, the growing recognition of the importance of interpreting traumatic experiences within cultural contexts led to the establishment of the specialty of cultural psychiatry in 1969, the dedication of the December 2010 special issue of the journal Traumatology to culture and trauma, and the updating of the DSM regarding cultural aspects of trauma. DSM-V (APA, 2013) addresses three issues regarding the effects of culture on trauma-related mental health: cultural syndrome , i.e. the cluster of co-occurring patterns of distress found in specific cultural groups; cultural idioms , i.e. how the disorder and its manifestations are conceptualized in various cultural contexts; and cultural explanation of its etiology. Accordingly, DSM-V includes detailed structured information about cultural concepts of distress, criteria for cross-cultural variations in symptom presentations, and a clinical interview tool to help assess cultural factors in clients’ perspectives of their symptoms and treatment options. In spite of recognition of the importance of culture, development of culture-specific models for the assessment and treatment of trauma has been recent and slow, and most studies examine trauma effects within specific cultural contexts while comparisons of traumatic exposure and its aftermath in individuals from diverse backgrounds are scarce.