Psychotherapy Contextualized: Culture, Reality, Self & Other

ICP&P’s 19th Annual Conference

Psychotherapy Contextualized: Culture, Reality, Self & Other

Featuring Kimberlyn Leary, PhD and Pratyusha Tummala-Narra, PhD


Date: Saturday, May 4, 2013

Time: Coffee & Registration – 8:15am, Program – 8:45am to 5:00pm

Location: National 4-H Conference Center, Chevy Chase, MD


Program Description

Psychotherapists have become increasingly cognizant that client narratives, therapist responses, and the therapeutic relationship are embedded in their broader socio-political, economic, and cultural contexts.  These contexts influence many aspects of our clinical work, including: how we define psychological problems; what we listen for and “hear” in the clinical hour; which ideas, events and relationships are illuminated and which “ignored”; which behaviors are considered permissible and which “inappropriate”; and how we make sense of processes unfolding within the therapeutic space.  Contextual factors impact the development of the personalities and subjectivities of both patients and therapists, yet are not necessarily consciously known or acknowledged. The unconscious finds ways of expressing and enacting our unexamined cultural assumptions regarding our own and other cultures and races.  A greater sense of cultural competence can come from increased cultural awareness, and through embracing various forms of differences among us, therapeutic efficacy is enhanced.

Learning Objectives   At the end of this conference, participants will be able to:

  1. Articulate how attending to both clients’ and therapists’ socio-cultural contexts and experiences can enrich understanding and deepen our empathic connection with our clients.
  2. Identify 3 ways in which psychoanalytic theory informs and deepens culturally competent practices in psychotherapy.
  3. Identify a strategy that can be used to integrate socio-cultural and contextual information in the conceptualization of presenting issues and treatment planning.
  4. Define a model of adaptive challenge as it applies to clinical work pertaining to difference.
  5. Explain a process by which racial constructs in America inform individual and institutional psychology.
  6. Identify specific ways in which therapists’ own struggles, privileges and socio-cultural backgrounds and perspectives, including implicit cultural associations, can influence the unfolding of the therapeutic relationship with clients from diverse cultural backgrounds.

Continuing Education Credit – 6.0 CE credits available for full attendance

For more information on this program, visit our website at or email


Written by ICPP Administrator