Title

Working with Narratives: Coping Strategies in African American Folk Beliefs and Traditional Healing Practices

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

9-23-2008

Publication Title

Journal of Human Behavior in the Social Environment

DOI

https://doi.org/10.1300/J137v15n01_07

ISSN

1540-3556

Abstract

This article will discuss healing across cultures and describe narrative practice as a means of access to coping strategies in African American folk beliefs and traditional healing practices. Four elements were found in empirical research on folk healing among African Americans: spirituality, ritual, the power of words, and dreams. These culture-specific healing elements often emerge as themes in personal narratives about coping in response to stress, crisis, and trauma. Viewing healing elements as themes is a useful framework for construing meanings from clients' experiences of stress, trauma, and crisis and coping strategies embedded in folk beliefs and traditional healing practices.

Additionally, the author presents a structured interview questionnaire for identifying folk healing themes, illustrates narrative practice as an approach for integrating folk beliefs and healing practices, and discusses implications for clinical training.

Comments

Copyright and Open Access: https://v2.sherpa.ac.uk/id/publication/5622

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