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Gaztambide, D. J. (2012). Addressing cultural impasses with rupture resolution strategies: A proposal and recommendations. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 43(3), 183-189.

What diversity/subjectivity topics are they discussing?

cultural-relational re-enactments and repair

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Author introduces idea of cultural-relational re-enactment and repair.


In striving to become more culturally competent, clinicians are faced with the challenges of building and
maintaining a therapeutic alliance with clients from diverse ethnic backgrounds. These challenges evoke
related concerns regarding the corrosive effect of cultural misattunements, microaggressions, and
impasses on the therapeutic alliance and how these lead to poorer treatment outcomes and higher dropout
rates for ethnic minority clients. By emphasizing nondefensive responsiveness and validation of the
patient’s experience, rupture resolution strategies provide a pragmatic set of skills that, when integrated
with cultural mindfulness, have the potential of addressing cultural ruptures in the here-and-now
encounter with the culturally different. This article will review the theoretical foundation and evidence
base for alliance repair interventions and elucidate a model of culturally conscious rupture resolution.
This model posits that ruptures in psychotherapy with ethnic minorities not only point to tensions
emerging in the therapeutic alliance, but also reorient the treatment dyad toward broader sociocultural
realities. Successfully processing these relational– cultural enactments may lead to a “corrective cultural
experience” that is transformative to both client and clinician. A case example will be presented to
illustrate the process of becoming aware of and repairing cultural ruptures in the therapeutic relationship.

Resource contributed by:

Michelle Levine

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