Classism and Feminist Therapy : Counting Costs book cover
1st Edition

Classism and Feminist Therapy
Counting Costs

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ISBN 9781560230922
Published October 18, 1996 by Routledge
179 Pages

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Book Description

Classism and Feminist Therapy: Counting Costs makes therapists more aware of their own class biases which assists them in providing more effective treatment that is sensitive to women's backgrounds. By helping therapists face important issues when their profession intersects with the values and experiences of working-class women, Classism and Feminist Therapy challenges the lack of attention given to issues of class in psychotherapy and serves as a step toward open conversation about the topic.

Calling attention to the sociopolitical nature of therapy, contributors define some ways in which current therapeutic practices can become oppressive when class differences between client and therapist are ignored. In Classism and Feminist Therapy, therapists gain valuable insight about how class matters are played out in therapy. These insights are combined with guidelines as to how to engage in a less class-biased form of psychotherapy. To this end, contributors discuss:

  • class-related biases and assumptions commonly held by therapists
  • how to make psychotherapy more responsive to the needs of working-class and poor women
  • the intersection of class, race, and gender and how this applies to therapy
  • strengths and challenges for working-class, poor, and economically privileged women
  • class and gender in a political and sociological context
  • social-psychological dynamics of internalized classism and pathways to healing and self-recovery

    This engaging book alerts therapists to the failures and inadequacies of current approaches to class as an issue in psychological theory and psychotherapy. It discusses how the issue of class has been overshadowed by the assumptions that individuals and society make about it: that people are the class they deserve to be; that class is correlated with how hard one works or how smart one is; and that class is primarily a matter of income or owned assets rather than of access (both psychologically and practically) to resources.

    All therapists--psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, mental health counselors--of intermediate to advanced levels of knowledge and practice will find information in Classism and Feminist Therapy invaluable for confronting issues of class in their professional and personal interactions.

Table of Contents

  • We Can’t Afford It: Confusions and Silences on the Topic of Class (Marcia Hill)
  • The Rich Get Social Services and the Poor Get Capitalism (Esther D. Rothblum)
  • Class as a Construct in a “Classless” Society (Nancy Lynn Baker)
  • Speaking Up: White, Working Class Women in Therapy (Bonnie Chalifoux)
  • Conceptualizations of Social Class in African American Women: Congruence of Client and Therapist Definitions (Karen Fraser Wyche)
  • Speaking Rich People’s Words: Implications of a Feminist Class Analysis and Psychotherapy (Elaine Leeder)
  • Internalized Classism: The Role of Class in the Development of Self (Glenda M. Russell)
  • The Poverty of Privilege: Therapy With Women of the “Upper” Classes (Janet L. Wolfe and Iris G. Fodor)
  • Treatment of Depression in Disadvantaged Women (Francisca Azocar, Jeanne Miranda, and Eleanor Valdes Dwyer)
  • African American Women Survivors of Sexual Assault: The Intersection of Race and Class (Lily D. McNair and Helen A. Neville)
  • The Impact of Economic Disadvantage on Gifted Women’s Educational Development (Gloria Rose Koepping)
  • Internalizing Power Dynamics: The Wounds and the Healing (Joan F. Hertzberg)
  • Cognitive Restructuring of Professionals’ Schema Regarding Women Parenting in Poverty (Sandra T. Azar)
  •  A Class Conscious Perspective on the Use of Self as Instrument in Graduate Clinical Training (Eleanor Roffman)
  • Reference Notes Included

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