Humanistic Approaches to Multiculturalism and Diversity : Perspectives on Existence and Difference book cover
1st Edition

Humanistic Approaches to Multiculturalism and Diversity
Perspectives on Existence and Difference

ISBN 9780815395836
Published September 30, 2019 by Routledge
248 Pages

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Book Description

Providing an overview of essential topics in multicultural psychology, Humanistic Approaches to Multiculturalism and Diversity focuses on the intersection of humanistic psychology and multiculturalism, including history, theory, research, and practice.

The authors examine the unique contributions of humanistic psychology to multicultural psychology on topics often ignored, such as cultural empathy and indigenous psychology and diversity. The book critiques and rectifies previous failures to adequately engage multicultural issues by providing methods for integrating multicultural psychology and humanistic therapy. Readers will find that each chapter advances scholarship through a dialogue with multicultural perspectives and builds a foundation for future scholarship and clinical practice.

This book will be of great interest to mental health professionals interested in humanistic and existential psychology.

Table of Contents

Foreword by Kirk J. Schneider

List of contributors

PART I: History and Critique of Humanistic Psychology from a Multicultural Perspective

1. Introduction

Louis Hoffman, Heatherlyn Cleare-Hoffman, Nathaniel Granger, Jr., and David St. John

2. Why I Left Humanistic Psychology

Geneva Reynaga-Abiko

3. The Challenge of Multiculturalism to Humanistic Psychology

Dan Hocoy

4. The History of Black Psychology and Humanistic Psychology: Synergetic Prospects

Theopia Jackson

5. Humanity and Inhumanity: Relational Themes in Humanistic-Existential Psychology and Multiculturalism Reflected in the United States Constitution, U.S. Constitutional Jurisprudence, and the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Alan G. Vaughan

PART II: Multicultural Competencies and Beyond in Humanistic Practice

6. Multicultural Competencies and Humanistic Psychology 

Lisa Vallejos and Zonya Johnson

7. Microaggressions and Humanistic Psychology

Nathaniel Granger, Jr.

8. White Privilege: A Multifaceted Responsibility

Michael Moats

9. Culture and Empathy in Humanistic Psychology

Louis Hoffman

10. Cultural Myths, Rituals, and Festivals

Heatherlyn Cleare-Hoffman, Louis Hoffman, and Jane Perlstein

11. No Time Like the Present: Embracing Psychological, Social, and Ecological Justice

David St. John 

PART III: Applications in Multicultural Contexts

12. Indigenous Psychology

Louise Sundararajan

13. Humanistic Perspectives on Sexuality

Sara K. Bridges and Christina M. New

14. Exploring Disability from the Lens of Humanistic Psychology

Juliet Rohde-Brown

15. If You Live Long Enough: An Existential-Humanistic Perspective on Aging

Myrtle Heery

16. Religious and Spiritual Diversity and Humanistic Psychology

Drake Spaeth

17. Multiculturalism and Intersectionality: Weaving New Webs of Relationship and Solidarity

Joel Federman

Afterword: Back to the Future

Ilene A. Serlin


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Louis Hoffman, PhD, is a licensed psychologist in private practice. He provides training and supervision through the International Institute for Existential-Humanistic Psychology and teaches at Saybrook University.

Heatherlyn Cleare-Hoffman, PsyD, is a licensed psychologist originally from the Bahamas. She has worked as a faculty member, supervisor, and staff psychologist at various graduate and training programs in psychology.

Nathaniel Granger, Jr., PsyD, is a past president of the Society for Humanistic Psychology (APA Division 32), and a recipient of the Hari Camari Early Career Award. He also works as an adjunct professor at Saybrook University.

David St. John, PhD, is the executive director of FairSky Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the promotion of psychological, social, and ecological justice. He also teaches at the University of Detroit Mercy and Schoolcraft College.


"This excellent volume provides new and important perspectives on humanistic approaches to multicultural issues in clinical theory and psychotherapy. The authors embrace the foundations of humanistic psychology, and place at the core, the humanity and dignity of people. At the same time, they recognize the complex role of historical and ongoing social injustice and sociocultural identity on human experience. The volume expands humanistic psychology toward the inclusion of cultural humility as essential to empathy and connection in the psychotherapeutic relationship. It is an invaluable resource for therapists working with clients of any sociocultural background." — Usha Tummala-Narra, PhD, associate professor in the Department of Counseling, Development, and Educational Psychology, Boston College, USA

"I have been so longing for this book to be written! It is a multi-perspectival consideration of the two leading approaches to psychotherapy that were formulated to maximize client empowerment in psychotherapy. Complexities related to how identity, social position, and relationship interact unfold in layer upon layer. Each chapter is a gentle invitation to become aware of another set of implicit beliefs, and by the end of reading you will more clearly understand your clients’ lived experiences and gain new perspectives on how therapy can function." Heidi M. Levitt, professor of psychology, University of Massachusetts Boston, USA

"Shockingly honest, refreshing, and accessible to graduate students, academics, and seasoned clinicians, this book provides critical thinking and multifaceted realities. Through lived experiences, psychological literature, and suggested next steps, readers will be validated, challenged, and motivated to expand their theoretical orientation, research paradigms, case conceptualizations, and deepen their use of self in work and life." Terri M. Davis, director of the PsyD program and associate professor, University of Denver, USA

"The celebration of difference and diversity is at the very core of a humanistic ethic; yet humanistic psychology itself, has been woefully inadequate in addressing issues of multiculturalism, racism, and the dehumanisation of minority groups. The value of this book, therefore, is immense: taking our field right to the forefront of current debates and dialogues on these issues. In this respect, it deserves a place on the bookshelf of every humanistic psychologist." Mick Cooper, University of Roehampton, UK and author of Existential Therapies