Laura Smith, PhD, Debbie-Ann Chambers, MA, and Lucinda Bratini, EdM, Department of Counseling and Clinical Psychology, Teachers College, Columbia University.
When Oppression Is the Pathogen: The Participatory Development of Socially Just Mental Health Practice
Article first published online: 21 JUL 2010
2009 American Orthopsychiatric Association
American Journal of Orthopsychiatry
Volume 79, Issue 2, pages 159–168, April 2009
How to Cite
Smith, L., Chambers, D.-A. and Bratini, L. (2009), When Oppression Is the Pathogen: The Participatory Development of Socially Just Mental Health Practice. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 79: 159–168. doi: 10.1037/a0015353
- Issue published online: 21 JUL 2010
- Article first published online: 21 JUL 2010
- Received November 14, 2007; Revision received September 30, 2008; Accepted January 26, 2009
- social justice;
Social justice perspectives have revealed the ways that racist, sexist, heterosexist and classist assumptions are embedded within conventional mental health theory and practice. Moreover, recent research has explored the pathogenic influence of structural oppression on the emotional well-being of people impacted by it. How can practitioners develop socially just interventions in keeping with these findings, especially with regard to their practice with clients from oppressed groups? In addressing this question, the authors propose the participatory development of socially just mental health practice and provide three examples of their community-based work.