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The Black Family:

Mental Health Perspectives

The Black Task Force of San Francisco General Hospital had a mandate to improve care of black patients.  To that end, the Task Force held conferences; this monograph contains the major papers presented at the Second Annual Conference held October 13 and 14, 1984.  This exciting event brought together scholars and clinicians from around the country to describe the interface between black family studies and family therapy. 


Black family studies have attacked misconceptions, based on racial premises, in order to present the uniqueness and strength of the black family.  Family therapy has similarly attempted to redefine a field, by promoting systems-based rather than individual-based analysis of health and illness.  The papers included in this volume reflect the influences of these fields as the issues are addressed by psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers and anthropologists.  The resulting range is broad, and the unified message is clear: it is from this redefined knowledge base that accurate and powerful clinical work will emerge.

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