Encyclopedia of Couple and Family Therapy

2019 Edition
| Editors: Jay L. Lebow, Anthony L. Chambers, Douglas C. Breunlin

White Privilege in Couple and Family Therapy

  • Amanda M. MitchellEmail author
  • Christopher M. Davids
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-49425-8_1014

Name of Concept

White Privilege in Couple and Family Therapy.


Privilege; Racial identity privilege; White racial identity development; White skin privilege


To facilitate culturally responsive couple and family therapy, the implications of white privilege warrant examination. Indeed, core competencies developed by the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) encourage the recognition of systemic and conceptual factors in couple and family therapy – which includes racial/ethnic identities – in treatment initiation, clinical assessment, and intervention implementation (AAMFT 2004). Thus, the privilege afforded to clients with white racial identities may merit exploration to aid the therapeutic process. Similarly, a White clinician’s therapeutic presence and multicultural competence may be enhanced through developing self-awareness about beliefs, attitudes, and experiences regarding race/ethnicity and white privilege (e.g., Mindrup et al. 2011).


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of LouisvilleLouisvilleUSA
  2. 2.Westminster CollegeSalt Lake CityUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Kelley Quirk
    • 1
  • Adam R. Fisher
    • 2
  1. 1.Colorado State UniversityFort CollinsUSA
  2. 2.The Family Institute at Northwestern UniversityEvanstonUSA