Exploration of Gelso Chapter 14: Feminist Multicultural Counseling: Integration and Cultural Competence in a Changing World
The feminism approach I found most compelling was the Transnational/Global Feminism. I believe it is essential to spread the ideology of globalization, and this type of feminism places importance on inequalities across different cultures, countries, and their women. It also is rooted in understanding the etiology of these issues based on political and governmental influences and constructs. Feministic approaches strive to reach the core of the problem and dismantle it through understanding and transformation.
Gilbert’s, two elements correlate with the Transnational/Global Feminism and my therapeutic approach. I currently align best with humanistic-existential, multicultural, feminist, and narrative theories. The first element personal is politicalis explained through the connection between personal experience and institutionalized/larger social and political structures. Globally, government and political influence are critically impactful for large populations — for instance, the creation of slavery on target groups like African and Jewish populations. My therapeutic approaches support the importance of culture, gender, and power force on development. My techniques incorporate empowerment and gaining a meaningful life despite the adversity and use of isms in our current culture. The second element: the therapeutic relationship strives to be egalitarianis described as how the therapist models (egalitarian, empathetic, unconditional positive regard, etc.). The Global feminist type endorses these characteristics and ideologies as ways of connecting with groups. Clients are the experts in their life, and it is considered disrespectful to encourage other nationalities or minorities to assimilate. My therapeutic approaches support this in facilitating authenticity, awareness of others, and self-actualization — while including the context of culture, location, and power.
I am naturally interested in how constructed problems like gender inequalities, power relations, and sexuality are created and accepted by different groups of people. This may be the reason why left legacies are important to me. Social constructs play a significant role in building identity and understanding self-purpose. Feminism establishes a framework where these social constructs can be explored in or out of the therapeutic space.
I would not get rid of any of the feminism groups as I believe they each offer a valuable angle. The role of feminism and multilateralism play in the field of psychology is something I would like to ponder more. The text describes several similarities between the multiculturalism theory and feminism theory. Several populations and minority groups are internally impacted by their environment in critical ways — so much that several extraneous factors compromise their self-identity. In considering how the self is formed, Ego psychology compared to feminism is alike in the emphasis on environmental influences, but Ego psychology does not place as much focus on gender inequalities as the feministic approach has.
Over time the significance of a client’s gender has been included in understanding the client’s environment in connection to their world view. I value the feministic perspective in considering the role our environment plays on gender, and the multicultural perspective regarding inclusion and connection between different groups. The text shared that the feminist approach has positively progressed and given women a new voice institutionally. However, I believe this movement includes multiculturalism and activism to build social change rather than internal (personal) change, which means that the focus of the theories appears more rooted in activism than a therapeutic solution to pathology.
I question if the feminist approach is more of a conscientious consideration to effectively support minority groups in treatment (like multiculturalism) rather than a theoretical foundation. By creating set approaches to work with minority groups, I wonder if the idea of the best therapeutic approach is institutionalized (as explained in the above reflection). The field of psychology has struggled to integrate the African American population into the use of therapy, and historically, the feminist and multicultural theories were used to support these specific minority groups. I wonder if the origin of these approaches tarnished the current perspective of psychology and mental health for African Americans.
Black Feminism, I am a Black Feminist.
Gelso, C., Williams, E.N., & Fretz, B. (2014). Counseling Psychology(3rd ed.). Washington, DC: APA.