Cultural Competence in Trauma Therapy: Beyond the Flashback
For individuals in the U.S. & U.S. territories
Few of the excellent models that have been developed for working with trauma survivors take into account the complexity of an individual's unique background and experience. Even treatment for members of "special groups" often ignores the individual's multilayered identities — which may include age, social class, ethnicity, religious faith, sexual orientation, and immigrant status — in favor of a "one-size-fits all" approach.
Drawing on her extensive clinical experience and the latest research, Laura Brown shows therapists how to become more sensitive to individual identity when working with clients who have suffered trauma. The author explains how culturally sensitive therapists draw upon multiple strategies for treating patients and are aware of both dominant group privilege and of their own identity and culture.
The book has a practical focus and contains a variety of case studies illustrating how theoretical constructs can inform assessment and treatment.
Introduction: Trauma, a Multicultural Reality
I. Culturally Competent Models of Trauma Treatment
- Knowing Difference or We're All Diverse Here
- Living in Multiple Identities in the Context of Trauma
- Entering the Healing Process
- Diversifying the Definition of Trauma
II. Contextual Paradigms for Understanding the Nature of Trauma
- Trauma, Age, and Ageism
- Trauma, Sex, and Gender
- Trauma, Culture, Phenotype, and Ethnicity
- Trauma and Sexual Orientation
- Living With Disabilities in the Context of Trauma
- The Great Divide: Trauma and Social Class
- Migration and Dislocation
- Trauma and Systems of Meaning Making
III. Interpersonal and Psychotherapist Variables
- Weaving the Web of Support: Working With Families and Communities and Caring for Oneself
Conclusion: Looking Forward
Appendix: Guidelines to Inform Cultural Competence in Practice
About the Author
Laura S. Brown, PhD, received a doctorate in clinical psychology in 1977 from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and has been in practice as a clinician and forensic psychologist in Seattle since 1979. She has served on the faculties of Southern Illinois University, University of Washington, and the Washington School of Professional Psychology.
A diplomate in clinical psychology and a fellow of 10 divisions of APA, Dr. Brown has received numerous awards from her peers for her work in the fields of feminist therapy theory and trauma treatment. These honors include the Distinguished Publications Award of the Association for Women in Psychology, APA's Award for Distinguished Professional Contributions to Public Service, the Sarah Haley Award for Clinical Excellence from the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies, and the Carolyn Wood Sherif Award from the Society for the Psychology of Women.
Her books include Subversive Dialogues: Theory in Feminist Therapy and (with Kenneth S. Pope) Recovered Memories of Abuse. She is the therapist featured in two videos on trauma treatment in the APA video series and is a founding member of APA's Division of Trauma Psychology.
Currently, Dr. Brown directs the Fremont Community Therapy Project, a training clinic that she founded in 2006 to provide low-cost psychotherapy and psychological assessment. She is a student of aikido and lives in Seattle with her partner and her canine cotherapist.