1st Edition

Intersectionality and Group Analysis Explorations of Power, Privilege, and Position in Group Therapy

Edited By Suryia Nayak, Alasdair Forrest Copyright 2024
    176 Pages
    by Routledge

    176 Pages
    by Routledge

    Drawing on clinical practice, this book explores how the Black feminist idea of intersectionality is vital to all group work practices, including group analysis.

    Intersectionality enables exploration of power, position, and privilege in group work; this volume is an argument for the ‘decolonizing’ of therapeutic group training, practice, and institutional traditions. The wide range of contributors discuss the impact of intersectionality on their work within group analysis, from clinical examples to theoretical reflections. Chapters span topics such as leadership, racism, working with survivors of sexual violence, and the experience of being a political refugee. Intersectionality and Group Analysis provides a space to develop clinically relevant theory for the future and includes an accessible introduction to the concepts of intersectionality.

    This essential text will be key reading for group analysts, other professionals working with and within groups, and readers looking to learn more about enhancing diversity within structures and organizations. 

    1. Holding the Broken Pieces: An Intersectional Approach to Group Analysis for Women in Prison

    Anne Aiyegbusi

    2. Do Black Women’s Bodies Matter in Group Analysis? Moving From Double to Intersectional Consciousness

    Anthea Benjamin

    3. The Body of the Group: Sexuality, Transgender, and Group Polyphony

    Daniel Anderson

    4. This Is How I Came To Live in Stuckness: Intersectionality, Oppression and ‘Affectivism’ as a Group Analytic Intervention

    Reem Shelhi

    5. An Intersectional Response to the Intersectionality of Trauma

    Suryia Nayak and Farideh Dizadji

    6. Diffraction as the Group-Specific Phenomenon

    Alasdair Forrest

    7. Missing Dialogues

    Dick Blackwell and Claire Bacha


    Suryia Nayak, PhD is Senior Lecturer in Social Work at University of Salford, UK. She is a group analyst and feminist activist and has over 40 years of experience applying intersectionality in her work to end violence against women and girls, the trauma of forced migration, and the impact of colonization. 

    Alasdair Forrest, MRCPsych is a Group Analyst. He is Consultant Forensic Psychiatrist and Medical Psychotherapist at the Royal Cornhill Hospital, Scotland, UK. He chairs the Faculty of Medical Psychotherapy of the Royal College of Psychiatrists in Scotland and the training committee of the Glasgow Foundation Course in Group Analysis. 

    'Kudos to the editors and all the authors of this timely and important book regarding intersectionality and group analysis. Each chapter examines their experiences of the constraints and restraints of the tripartite matrix in their training and colleagueship within the profession. Readers are asked to consider how their own identities and internalized privileges inform how they conduct their groups. A bold and courageous invitation!'

    Richard Beck, LCSW, BCD, CGP, AGPA-F, Immediate Past President, IAGP; Senior Lecturer, Columbia University School of Social Work; Honorary Member, Italian Society for Psychosomatic Medicine; Lecturer in Social Work in Psychiatry (Voluntary) Weill Cornell Medicine

    'This exciting and innovative volume highlights the vitality of new currents in group analytic thinking and practice that speak to urgent sociopolitical agendas for change. Compelling and thought-provoking, its eight innovative, scholarly but above all practice-focused chapters, invite and inspire engagement and activism that both consolidates the core contributions of group analysis and also transforms it. This will be a core text for all trainees in psychotherapy and counselling.'

    Professor Erica Burman, Professor of Education, Manchester Institute of Education, UK

    'Intersectionality and Group Analysis is an inspiring, creative and innovative paradigm-change to decolonize group analytic theory and practice and to allow for group polyphonic spaces. It promises to enable anti-racist therapeutic practice in clinics and in trainings. A highly relevant and much needed impulse for the advancement of group analysis in a globalized world.'

    Dr Elisabeth Rohr, Professor, Intercultural Education, Philipps-University Marburg, Germany (until 2013); group analytical trainer, consultant and supervisor in national and international fields of work

    'The authors together flesh out intersectionality as a necessarily embodied and collective approach to interpreting and changing the world, making the book an invaluable conceptual resource and call to action for group analysts, for every analyst.'

    Professor Ian Parker, Secretary, Manchester Psychoanalytic Matrix, UK

    'Finally! Group analysis, in theory and practice, is making space for people with historically marginalized identities. This important network of authors has unapologetically and beautifully captured the simultaneously painful and generative experience of being the Other, not just subjectively but also structurally. They argue that until the many forms of structural oppression are accounted for and centred in our work, psychoanalysis and psychotherapy will continue to be for a select privileged group. Understanding intersectionality is at the heart of offering ethical, humane, compassionate, and skilful care for everyone.'

    Kavita Avula, Psy.D.; President, Therapists Beyond Borders; Soundview School Board of Trustees; Vice President, National Group Psychotherapy Institute; Past President, Dean Puget Sound Group Psychotherapy Network