Francesca Maximé – ReRooted – Ep. 17 – Whiteness on the Couch with Dr. Natasha Stovall

Francesca Maximé - ReRooted - Ep. 17 - Whiteness on the Couch with Dr. Natasha Stovall

Natasha Stovall, PhD, joins Francesca on the Rerooted Podcast for conversation around “whiteness” and addressing the spectrum of racial identity in therapy.

Dr. Natasha Stovall is an adult, adolescent and child psychologist with a wide range of experience helping people work through life’s difficulties. A core part of her work is helping people strengthen their capacities for healthy self-reflection and coping. Teaching skills that lead to a diminishing of problematic patterns and a blossoming of creative growth. Read Natasha’s insightful article on racial identity and psychology: Whiteness on the Couch

Whiteness on the Couch

How does racial identity factor into our psychology and mental health? Natasha speaks about how individual psychology is affected by the social groups they are raised in. She and Francesca discuss the state of clinical research around the effects of social groups.

“There is a whole field of whiteness studies, which has really been going for almost thirty years now, but it really is easy to go through your training as a psychologist and other psychotherapy modalities and never encounter it.” – Natasha Stovall   

Unearthing Constructs (9:20)

Whiteness has become the neutral central position that other racial identities are contrasted against. As a result, in the West, whiteness has been left relatively unexamined as a whole. Natasha and Francesca talk about examining whiteness and understanding social constructs. Looking at how social constructs manifest in a person’s personal identity and how they factor into issues that are treated on the therapist’s couch.

“There are many people who have talked about whiteness as a social construct, a racial construct, or a psychological construct, but very rarely in psychology and almost never among psychotherapists.” – Natasha Stovall

Raising Awareness (33:55)

Francesca and Natasha talk about bringing awareness to the privileges and responsibilities that come along with whiteness. They examine the different levels that people need to be reached at in order for them to bring greater awareness to the complex dynamics of their racial identity.

Explore how understanding implicit bias can allow us to operate in the world with greater awareness and compassion on Ep. 9 of the ReRooted Podcast with guests Percy Ballard and Kate Lingren.

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