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Macmillan Higher Education Palgrave Higher Education

Internal Racism

A Psychoanalytic Approach to Race and Difference

ISBN 9780333964576
Publication Date August 2011
Formats Paperback 
Publisher Palgrave
Series The Palgrave Psychotherapy Series

Racism's external forms, from racial assault to petty discrimination, are readily recognized. However, its internal dimensions are easily overlooked: how can we understand what happens in the mind of those engaged in or experiencing racism?

This book explores the inner relationship between the self and the socially stereotyped – 'racial' – other, providing a clinically derived model of how racist dynamics play out in the mind. Presenting an original theory of the psychology of racism, it:

• Reviews and analyses the existing literature on racism and psychoanalysis, including an extensive study of Frantz Fanon's psychological model
• Presents new, in-depth clinical observations of racist interchanges in the consulting room and group settings, and new perspectives on such interchanges in the outside world
• Theorizes the way in which the race/class divide is internalized and operates, and considers the relationship between individual and institutional racism
• Illustrates how racism can be addressed in group and individual settings

Arguing that we cannot work with problems of racism without understanding the inner processes that underpin it, this book is an indispensable tool for trainee and experienced psychoanalysts, psychotherapists and counsellors. Its formulations are directly relevant to professionals and academics working across the boundaries of race in health, medical and social service settings.

M. FAKHRY DAVIDS is an Honorary Consultant Psychologist at the London Clinic of Psychoanalysis, UK. He also runs a private practice in psychoanalysis and psychotherapy.

A Clinical Study of a Racist Attack
Theoretical Considerations
An Established Racist Organization
Analysing Racism in a Group
Frantz Fanon: The Black Problem
Psychoanalysis and Racism: Anti-Semitism
White-Black Racism
Institutional Racism
Concluding Remarks.


This book is well written and a welcome addition to the literature on 'race' and racism.' - The British Journal of Psychiatry
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