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While diversity can be defined broadly, the resources here mainly reflect on race, ethnicity, and disability culture. The sources included here quite often deal with other subjects concerning women and disability such as aging, health care, mental health, and many others.

Abraido-Lanza, A. F., Chao, M. T., & Gammon, M. D. (2004, August). Breast and cervical cancer screening among Latinas and non-Latina whites. American Journal of Public Health, 94(8), 1393-1398.

Chao et al examine whether Latinas differ from non-Latinas in having undergone recent mammography, clinical breast examination, or Papanicolaou testing, as well as the contribution of sociodemographic and health care variables to screening. They conclude that Latinas ethnicity does not predict breast and cervical cancer screening behavior independent of sociodemographic and structural factors. 

Ali, A., & Toner, B. B. (2001, September). Symptoms of depression among Caribbean women and Caribbean-Canadian women. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 25(3), 175-180.

This study compared an immigrant sample of Caribbean-Canadian women (n =: 20) and a sample of women living in the Caribbean (n = 20) on the following variables: dominant domain of meaning (defined as that aspect of the participant's life from which she derives primary meaning for her sense of self); self-silencing (defined as the tendency to silence one's thoughts and feelings; Jack, 1991); and symptoms of depression. Results revealed that the Caribbean women were more likely to report relational domains of meaning as primary (e.g., family, friendships, intimate relationships), while the Caribbean-Canadian women were more likely to report domain of self-nurturance as primary (e.g., career goals, spirituality). Furthermore, univariate analysis revealed that the Caribbean-Canadian women reported higher levels of self-silencing and depressive symptoms, and derived less meaningfulness from their primary domains of meaning compared to the Caribbean women. These findings suggest that the immigrant experience may be a factor in women's emotional well-being.

America Undercover: The Execution of Wanda Jean
[Film]. (2003). New York: HBO Documentaries.

This documentary about the execution of an African-American lesbian who killed her lover explores the humanity of both the death penalty and the label of mental retardation. The claim by Wanda Jean’s lawyers that she is mentally retarded and therefore unfit to be executed raises all aspects of this ongoing discussion. This personal look at Death Row, the power of labels, and the finality of the death penalty is unforgettable. 

Banks, M. E. (2008). Women with disabilities: Cultural competence in rehabilitation psychology. Disability & Rehabilitation, 30(3), 184-190.

Women with Disabilities represent a cultural group with specific issues. Rehabilitation psychologists are encouraged to familiarize themselves with some of those issues in order to deliver culturally relevant treatment. An overview is provided of psychological guidelines for attending to cultural issues in assessment, treatment, and research. Broad issues faced by Women with Disabilities are described. Disability-specific safety concerns are discussed with attention to ways in which they might be addressed by rehabilitation psychologists. 

Banks, M. E., & Kaschak, E. (Eds.). (2003). Women with visible and invisible disabilities: Multiple intersections, multiple issues, multiple therapies. Binghamton, NY: Haworth Press.

This thoughtful collection addresses the issues faced by women with disabilities, examines the social construction of disability, and makes suggestions for the development and modification of culturally relevant therapy to meet the needs of disabled women. Written in an accessible style—often in the words of women coping with various disabilities—and with a minimum of jargon, this book provides clinical material from the perspectives of psychotherapists, clients, personal assistants, and health administrators. Co- published simultaneously as Women & Therapy, Vol. 26, nos. 1/2 and 3/4 in 2003.

Beatty, L. A. (2003). Substance abuse, disabilities, and Black women: An issue worth exploring. In M. E. Banks, & E. Kaschak (Eds.), Women with visible and invisible disabilities: multiple intersections, multiple issues, multiple therapies, Part II [Special issue]. Women & Therapy, 26(3/4), 223-236.

This paper presents information on the incidence and causes of substance abuse and disabilities in Black women, identifying common problems and risks. Drug abuse is technically a disability; however, there is little in the literature that jointly addresses issues of drug addiction and disability. Black women are the second largest group of women with disabilities and one of the largest groups to suffer the consequences of drug use such as HIV/AIDS, a rising source of disability highly correlated with drug abuse. Psychiatric co-morbidities related to disabilities and drug abuse are identified. Implications for research and treatment are discussed.

Beauboeuf-Lafontant, T. (2007). You have to show strength: An exploration of gender, race, and depression. Gender & Society, 21(1), 28-51.

Investigating the possible overlap between depressed and presumably strong Black women, this article maintains that women's experiences of depression are both gendered and raced. A review of clinical and popular literatures examining Black women's experiences of depression as well as findings from an interview study with a nonclinical sample of 44 Black women suggest that the discourse of being strong may normalize a distress inducing level of selflessness and powerlessness among such women. Implications of this study include the need to consider the racially specific ways in which women are placed at risk for and experience depression. 

Borum, V. (2006). Reading and writing womanist poetic prose: African American mothers with deaf daughters. Qualitative Inquiry, 12(2), 340-352.

Poetic prose--a creative, novel, qualitative technique developed by the author--is used to present in a multivocal, interactive, and interwoven style the findings of in-depth, thematic interviews with 12 African American mothers with deaf daughters. This style of interweaving the voices of participants in a creative prose is indicative of African American cultural and oral tradition. It permits and deepens the readers ability to emotionally and spiritually connect with experiences and emotions of African American mothers with deaf daughters. Womanism/Black feminism offers a powerful conceptual framework for organizing and evoking these experiences of women as mothers and girls as daughters. 

Boster, D. H. (2009, Summer). An "epeleptick" bondswoman: Fits, slavery, and power in the antebellum South. Bulletin of the History of Medicine, 83(2), 271-301. 

Epilepsy, as nineteenth-century observers understood the disease construct, was a feared diagnosis associated with insanity and uncontrollability. Cases of epileptic fits in slaves-whether they were considered genuine or feigned- highlighted deep struggles among white masters, physicians, and slaves themselves over the control of African American bodies. Some slaves who experienced fits were subjected to prolonged experimental treatments at the hands of physicians and white masters. Although Southern medical sources largely ignored the connection between epilepsy and trauma in slaves, abolitionists and ex-slave narratives published in the North used epilepsy as a representation of the institution's cruelty. Some white observers thought that slaves with epilepsy were prone to malingering; epileptic fits were also a tool of slave resistance and had a significant role in slave sale negotiations. I use the case study of a fifteen-year-old bondswoman in Virginia, diagnosed with epilepsy in 1843, to illustrate the significance of the disease in the lives of African American slaves. 

Boyd, J. A. (1998). Can I get a witness? For sisters, when the blues is more than a song. New York: Dutton.

This book is a wake-up call to black women, their families, and the mental-health community on the subject of depression. Although it's the leading cause of mental-health-related deaths, depression is still not an illness that many African American women have been willing to recognize and treat. The author explores the links between self-esteem, depression, and women's health, and gives vivid testimony to black women's battle with the beast.

Boyle, J. S., Bunting, S. M., Hodnicki, D. R., & Ferrell, J. A. (2001). Critical thinking in African American mothers who care for adult children with HIV: A cultural analysis. Journal of Transcultural Nursing, 12(3), 193-202.

This research study defines critical thinking in nursing and examines the thinking processes revealed by 15 African American mothers who are caregivers to adult children with HIV. The purpose of this cultural analysis was to compare the mothers' decision-making processes with their critical-thinking processes. Their culture, heritage, faith, and value of family influenced caregivers in this study. Their testimony revealed the patterns of creating a different path of care, weaving together resources, choosing among negative alternatives, and selecting stories to tell. Mothers' decisions were based on complex and holistic knowledge of their situations and culture and could be termed multilogical, a type of thinking considered necessary for managing complex situations. Health providers can benefit from an understanding of these decision-making processes.

Brown, D., & Keith, V. (Eds.). (2003). In and out of our right minds: The mental health of African American women. New York: Columbia University Press.

African American women have commonly been portrayed as "pillars" of their communities--resilient mothers, sisters, wives, and grandmothers who remain steadfast in the face of all adversities. While these portrayals imply that African American women have few psychological problems, the scientific literature and demographic data present a different picture. They reveal that African American women are at increased risk for psychological distress because of factors that disproportionately affect them, including lower incomes, greater poverty and unemployment, unmarried motherhood, racism, and poor physical health. Yet at the same time, rates of mental illness are low. This invaluable book is the first comprehensive examination of the contradictions between the strengths and vulnerabilities of this population. Using the contexts of race, gender, and social class, In and Out of Our Right Minds challenges the traditional notions of mental health and mental illness as they apply to African American women.

Buki, L. P., Borrayo, E. A., & Feigal, B. M. (2004, December). Are all Latinas the same? Perceived breast cancer screening barriers and facilitative conditions. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 28(4), 400-411.

In this article, we examine perceived breast cancer screening barriers and facilitative conditions for immigrant women from Mexico, Puerto Rico, Cuba, El Salvador, and South America (N=58). Focus groups conducted separately with women of each ancestry were analyzed using grounded theory methods. Identified barriers comprise secrecy, lack of information, embarrassment, fear, and distrust of health care providers. Perceived facilitative conditions include knowing the importance of early detection and noticing a symptom. We compare and contrast findings across ancestries and discuss how psychosocial and cultural factors could be better integrated into early detection programs. The women's high screening rates also suggest that breast cancer screening can be facilitated in this population by addressing institutional factors (e.g., access to health care, transportation).

Bucharski, D., Reutter, L. I., & Ogilvie, L. D. (2006, September). “You need to know where we’re coming from”: Canadian aboriginal women's perspectives on culturally appropriate HIV counseling and testing. Health Care for Women International, 27(8), 723-747.

The purpose of this qualitative descriptive study was to determine Canadian Aboriginal women's perspectives on culturally appropriate HIV counseling and testing. Data were collected through semistructured individual interviews with 7 Aboriginal women, and one focus group, in a western Canadian city. Four major categories were elucidated through thematic content analysis: Aboriginal women's life experiences that may influence their risk of HIV infection and their response to testing; barriers to HIV testing; guiding principles of the ideal HIV testing situation; and characteristics of culturally appropriate HIV testing. The fear of being judged by both the Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal communities and the need for sensitivity to the historical and current context of Aboriginal women's life experiences were pervasive themes throughout the findings. 

Burr, J. (2002, April). Providing a contrasting view to evolutionary psychology's hypotheses on depression: Using a 'material-discursive' approach to interpret the experiences of depression in women from South Asian communities. Psychology, Evolution & Gender, 4(1), 93-113.

This study reports findings from a qualitative study exploring women from South Asian communities resident in the UK and their "experiences of depression." The paper aims to provide an apparently contrasting social context to the evolutionary perspective on women's experiences of depression. The theoretical foundation for the analysis of these findings is a "material-discursive approach." Depression is recognized as "embodied," that is as grounded in the materiality of the body which is immersed in subjective experiences and the social context of women's lives.

Carter, J. A. (2002, Autumn). A dialogue with divas: Issues affecting a scholarly agenda in special education, from Africana feminist perspectives. Journal of Negro Education, 71(4), 297-312.

This article highlights a study of African American women holding doctoral degrees in the field of special education and their experiences in composing scholarly agendas. It includes a plethora of themes regarding their resistance to the dominant cultural paradigm as it relates to initial experiences with special education programming, doctoral studies curricula, motivational supports, processes of hiring, and critical concerns for the field of special education. Each of these themes is contrasted with descriptions in the literature to provide better understanding of the unique perspective of Africana feminist scholarship. The findings from this study contribute new dialogue to professional development in higher education special education. 

Consedine, N. S., Horton, D., Magai, C., & Kukafka, R. (2007, August). Breast screening in response to gain, loss, and empowerment: Framed messages among diverse, low-income women. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 18(3), 550-566.

Framed messaging has emerged as an important means of promoting a number of health behaviors, including breast cancer screening. However, studies of message framing have infrequently considered race and income as possible moderators of framing effects, despite their importance to screening behavior. The current study examined whether demographic characteristics moderated participant responses to message framing. In the study, 102 Black and 42 White low-income, low-screening women were randomized to a loss, gain, or empowerment frame telephone intervention and re-contacted at 6 and 12 months. Contrary to expectation, there was no main effect for framing condition, although both loss and empowerment conditions elicited superior screening than the gain condition at 12 months. Income proved an important moderator of framing effects, interacting with both condition and race to influence screening. Message frames may differ in the amount of time they require to manifest in behavioral outcomes and may lead to changes in different screening outcomes. Understanding how framing effects vary as a function of key demographic characteristics such as race and income is likely to prove important as such variables facilitate targeting of frames. 

Corbett, C. A. (2003, June). Special issues in psychotherapy with minority Deaf women. In M. E. Banks, & E. Kaschak (Eds.), Women with visible and invisible disabilities: multiple intersections, multiple issues, multiple therapies, Part II [Special issue]. Women & Therapy, 26(3/4), 311-329.

Minority Deaf women have been traditionally underserved by mental health professionals, and specifically, therapists are unaware of issues unique to this population. It would be highly unlikely for a minority Deaf woman to have a therapist who matches her in racial background, hearing status, and communication mode. Therefore, the therapy process will be completely cross-cultural. Therapists who provide psychotherapy services to minority Deaf women need to be aware that their clients are members of a community where deafness is a culture and not a disability. Minority Deaf women are also likely to report feeling forced to choose between competing identities in order to get important needs met. In the following article, case examples are provided which illustrate some of the major issues that are likely to arise in therapy with minority Deaf women. These issues include: access to important information; communication, support and level of involvement with biological families; competing cultural demands; health concerns; and coping with chronic mental illness.

Cordero, A., & Kurz, B. (2006). Acculturation and the mental health of Latina women in the Women, Infant, and Children Program. Affilia, 21(1), 46-58.

Studies have reported discrepant findings about the relationship between acculturation and mental health, often because of inattention to interethnic group differences. This 2003 exploratory study of various Latina ethnic groups attending the Women, Infant, and Children (WIC) Program compared five measures of acculturation and mental health status/utilization. The subgroups differed on language, immigration/migration history, and the prevalence of anxiety attacks and depressive syndrome. The prevalence of anxiety attacks was the highest among those who spoke primarily Spanish, the prevalence of the depressive syndrome was the highest among those with more traditional beliefs, and the use of mental health services was the highest among those with less traditional beliefs. Implications for practice are discussed. 

Danquah, M. A. (1999). Willow weep for me: A black woman's journey through depression. New York: One World/Ballantine.

This moving memoir of an African-American woman's lifelong fight to identify and overcome depression offers an inspirational story of healing and emergence. Wrapped within Danquah's engaging account of this universal affliction is rare and insightful testimony about what it means to be black, female, and battling depression in a society that often idealizes black women as strong, nurturing caregivers. A startlingly honest, elegantly rendered depiction of depression, Willow Weep for Me calls out to all women who suffer in silence with a life-affirming message of recovery. Meri Danquah rises from the pages, a true survivor, departing a world of darkness and reclaiming her life.

Davis, J. A. (2005). Differences in the health care needs and service utilization of women in nursing homes: Comparison by race/ethnicity. Journal of Women & Aging, 17(3), 57-71.

The purpose of this study is to describe health care needs and service utilization among institutionalized women of color. The sample was dichotomized by length of stay to determine how African American, Native American, Asian/Pacific Islander, and Hispanic/Latino women differed at two points in time. Data for this study came from the Current Resident Survey of the 1999 National Nursing Home Survey. The data were analyzed using GLM. The findings suggest that Native American women are the most impaired and Asian/Pacific Islander women are the least impaired. Additionally, very few women received mental health services despite their extensive need.

Davis, Z. I. (1999). Compensation [Film]. New York: Women Make Movies.

Compensation, the first feature by award-winning filmmaker Zeinabu irene Davis (Cycles and A Powerful Thang), presents two unique African-American love stories between a deaf woman and a hearing man. Inspired by a poem written by Paul Laurence Dunbar, this moving narrative shares their struggle to overcome racism, disability and discrimination. An important film on African-American deaf culture, Davis innovatively incorporates silent film techniques (such as title cards and vintage photos) to make the piece accessible to hearing and deaf viewers alike, and to share the vast possibilities of language and communication.

DiClemente, R. J., Wingood, G. M., Lang, G. L., Crosby, R. A., Salazar, L. F., Harrington, K., & Hertzberg, V. S. (2005, July). Adverse health consequences that co-occur with depression: A longitudinal study of black adolescent females. Pediatrics, 116(1), 78-81.

Objective. The purpose of this study was to identify adverse health consequences that may co-occur with depression among black female adolescents.

Methods. Adolescents were recruited from high-risk neighborhoods in Birmingham, Alabama. The sample comprised 460 black female adolescents (aged 14–18 years) who completed assessments at baseline and at 6 and 12 months. Only adolescents who consistently scored above the threshold for depression at all 3 assessments (n = 76) or below the threshold at all 3 assessments (n = 174) were included (N = 250) in the data analysis. Within this sample, adolescents who were depressed were compared with those who were not depressed with respect to the following health consequences: low self-esteem, emotional abuse, physical abuse, verbal abuse, poor body image, and antisocial behavior.

Results. Using generalized estimating equations and controlling for covariates, depressed adolescents were 5.3 times more likely to report low self-esteem, 4.3 times more likely to report emotional abuse, 3.7 times more likely to report being physically abused, and almost 3 times as likely to report being verbally abused. Furthermore, depressed adolescents were more than twice as likely to report poor body image and nearly twice as likely to report engaging in antisocial behaviors.

Conclusions. The findings suggest that a broad range of adverse health consequences may accompany depression among black female adolescents. Physicians need to be alert to the co-occurrence of depression and low self-esteem; emotional, physical, and verbal abuse; poor body image; and antisocial behaviors among this population. 

Documét, P. I., Green, H. H., Adams, J., Weil, L. A. Stockdale, J., & Hyseni, Y. (2008). Perspectives of African American, Amish, Appalachian and Latina women on breast and cervical cancer screening: Implications for cultural competence. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 19(1), 56-74.

Low-income and minority women are less likely to be screened for breast and cervical cancer and less likely than others to be diagnosed at an early stage in the cancer's growth. We consulted women and providers to understand how social, economic, and health care environments affect screening among African American, Amish, Appalachian, and Latina women, and to outline possible solutions. Women participated in 31 focus groups. Providers completed a mail survey (n=168) and follow-up interviews (n=12). We identified barriers women face: not always following recommendations; feeling intimidated during appointments; having incorrect information about risks, screening guidelines, and programs; and receiving information in ways they cannot understand or accept. Women indicated a strong desire for accurate information and, like the providers, identified strategies for reducing barriers to screening. In the terms of a social ecological model, our results point to three avenues along which to approach cultural competence: 1) policy, 2) health care provision, and 3) clinical care. 

Dossa, P. (2005, June). Racialized bodies, disabling worlds: “They [service providers] always saw me as a client, not as a worker.” Social Science & Medicine, 60(11), 2527-2536.

This paper makes a case for a contextualized reading of intersecting constructs of disability, gender and race as they unfold in the everyday lives of immigrant women with disabilities. Taking the vantage point of Mehrun, a Canadian Muslim woman with polio, we show that the disability, gender and race constructs converge in some contexts and remain separate in others. This is an important consideration as it forestalls a situation where immigrant women’s activist work is seen to be confined to the discrete sphere of their own communities. Mehrun’s story of migration and settlement as well as her ‘‘work’’ on community integration of persons with disabilities (regardless of race or gender) is a plea for the civil rights of disabled people. At the same time, Mehrun’s embodied reality as a racialized woman with disabilities suggests the possibility of making her marginality the epicenter of change.

Dossa, P. (2006, June). Disability, marginality and the nation-state-negotiating social markers of difference: Fahimeh’s story. Disability & Society, 21(4), 345-358.

Testimonial narratives of racialized women with disabilities bring into relief subjugated knowledge that reveal how the state constitutes and is reconstituted at the margins. Fahimeh’s case example, drawn from a larger study on immigrant Muslim women in metropolis Vancouver, shows how women resist and rework the stigmatized labels of disability and race from their social locations at the margins. Our analysis of particular events and critical episodes show how Fahimeh, speaking in a collective voice, implicates the state to bring home the message that racialized persons with disabilities are human. Their humanness (desire for a just world) is affirmed through blurring of boundaries of the private and the public, and everyday life and state institutions. Fahimeh’s testimonial shows that margins are not merely territorial; they are sites of practice that point to the makings of a just world. 

Dossa, P. (2008). Creating alternative and demedicalized spaces: Testimonial narrative on disability, culture, and racialization. Journal of International Women’s Studies, 9(3), 79-98.

The literature on disability, gender and “race” has benefited from the political economy perspective. With its emphasis on unmasking the workings of power, this perspective has brought into relief the systemic, institutionalized and spatial oppression of disabled persons, compounded in the case of gender and “race.” This narrative of deconstruction, however, remains incomplete in the absence of voice and subjectivity of persons with disabilities. Using narrative moments, recounted by an immigrant woman with two “disabled” children, this paper makes a case for an integrated framework for a study of racialized persons with disabilities. Here, the margins2 are not out there in other spaces; they form part of the centre whose existence is brought into question by alternative and demedicalized spaces. The data are drawn from a larger study of health and well being of South Asian East African women in metropolitan Vancouver, Canada. 

Durr, M. (2005, December). Sex, drugs, and HIV: Sisters of laundromat. Gender & Society, 19(6), 721-728.

“I was listening to 98.7 KISS and preparing to walk to the laundromat around the corner from my apartment in Brooklyn, New York, when the hosts of the radio program made the following public service announcement: As of December 2003, according to the Office of Women’s Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 67 percent of all women with AIDS are African American and 16 percent are Hispanic. The accelerating rate of AIDS among Black and Hispanic women stands in sharp contrast to the low rate found among Asian American women and the declining rate among white women and speaks volumes about continuing patterns of class and racial inequality.”

The author then reflects on how an encounter in a local neighborhood laundromat served to ground her further into the realities of HIV, substance abuse, and low income life among African American women.

Edmond, A. A. (2002, March). Motivation: [Guts & glory]: Taking the 'dis' out of disability. Black Enterprise, 32(8), 102-103.

Profiles Carmen Jones, an African American woman who was paralyzed in an auto accident while she was a student at Hampton University. Discusses the decisions Jones made about her future in light of her accident, in particular, her creation of Solutions Marketing Group. States that the company "assists mainstream businesses in marketing to, and servicing people with disabilities."

Eisenhower, A., & Blacher, J. (2006, December). Mothers of young adults with intellectual disability: multiple roles, ethnicity and well being. In R. P. Hastings, A. Turnbull & B. Tonge (Ed.), Special Issue on Family Research. Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, 50(12), pages 905-916.

Two opposing perspectives—role strain and role enhancement—were considered as predictive of women's psychological and physical health. The authors examined the relation between multiple role occupancy (parenting, employment, marriage) and wellbeing (depression and health) among mothers of young adults with intellectual disability (ID). Participants were 226 mothers aged 35 0 years old caring for a young adult aged 16'6 years old with moderate to severe/profound ID. Mothers were of either Latino ethnicity (N = 117) or Anglo (N = 109). Mothers' ethnicity and degree of acculturation and young adults' adaptive behaviour and behaviour problems were examined as potential moderators. Mothers who were employed, married, or both reported better wellbeing than mothers who were both unemployed and unmarried, especially when their offspring had relatively higher adaptive functioning. This relationship between role occupancy and wellbeing was fully mediated by socioeconomic status (SES) factors. Results did not suggest a role enhancement effect, but instead indicated a role shortage effect; unemployed, unmarried mothers experienced markedly poor wellbeing, while all other mothers experienced comparable wellbeing. Wellbeing scores were higher for Anglo than for Latino mothers; this relationship was entirely accounted for by SES. In Latina mothers, the relation between role occupancy and wellbeing was moderated by degree of acculturation. Findings suggest that multiple roles benefit mothers of young adults with ID primarily through their impact on socioeconomic resources. For more acculturated Latina mothers, occupying more roles predicted better wellbeing even after controlling for SES. Latina mothers who were unemployed and unmarried had lower SES, and this group emerged as at particular risk. The latter group may benefit most from respite assistance and other interventions aimed at addressing their physical and mental health. 

Ferri, B. A., & Connor, D. J. (2010, January). 'I was the special ed. girl': Urban working-class young women of colour. Gender and Education, 22(1), 105-121.

Recent criticism of the over-representation of minority students in special education do not adequately account for gender, despite the fact that urban special education classrooms in the USA are largely populated by young men of colour. In fact, we know very little about how being female shapes the experiences and understandings of young women of colour labelled disabled in schools. Using an interdisciplinary framework informed by Black feminist studies, disability studies, and class studies, we analyse autobiographical portraits of five young women of colour who received special education services. Focusing on their perspectives of life in and out of school, we examine how they understand and negotiate multiple subject positions and actively and creatively work to resist these constraints. 

Furner, S. E., Wallace, K., Arquelles, L., Miles, T., & Goldberg, J. (2006, November). Twin study of depressive symptoms among older African-American women. The Journals of Gerontology, 61B(6), P355-P362.

This study examines factors associated with depressive symptoms in a genetically informative sample of African-American female twins aged 65 years and older. A telephone interview was conducted with 180 pairs of twins. Questions included demographics, health behaviors, health status, activities of daily living (ADLs), instrumental ADLs, and depressive symptoms as measured by the Center for Epidemiologic Studies-Depression scale. Regression methods for clustered data were used to examine the associations. In univariate analyses, ADLs (odds ratio or OR = 1.4, 95% confidence interval or CI = 1.1-1.7), fractures (OR = 4.4, 95% CI = 1.3-15.6), and vision problems (OR = 1.9, 95% CI = 1.0-3.8) were significantly associated with depressive symptoms. In multivariable analyses, ADLs (OR = 1.4, 95% CI = 1.2-1.7) and vision problems (OR = 2.0, 95% CI = 1.2-3.5) remained significantly associated with depressive symptoms. A within-pair analysis, controlling for genetic or familial influences, produced similar results. The results suggest that efforts targeted at reducing levels of disability may reduce depressive symptoms in this population. 

Getch, Y. Q., Jones, S., Neuharth-Pritchett, S., & Chapmen, B. (2007, November). Hear my voice: An African American mother’s experience raising a child with a chronic illness. The Journal of Pan African Studies, 2(1), 33-52.

African American children are at greater risk of developing asthma and are more likely to die from asthma-related complications than European American children (Centers for Disease Control; Mannino et al. 1-13; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services) In addition, African Americans have poorer access to quality healthcare (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services). Scant research has been conducted regarding the experiences of African American mothers raising children with asthma and navigating the healthcare system. This qualitative study provides rich descriptions of a well-educated African American woman’s experience raising a child with asthma, allergies, and eczema. 

The case illustrates the stressors that may be experienced by many women who have children with chronic illnesses, and voices perhaps unique issues experienced by African-American mothers. Themes that emerged from the data included role strain, marital strain, insurance issues, barriers to quality medical care, impact on career, time management, childcare issues, family support, and the importance of spirituality. The authors describe each theme and provide specific examples to support conclusions derived from the data. 

Gillem, A. R., & Thompson, C. A. (2004). Biracial women in therapy: Between the rock of gender and the hard place of race. Binghamton, NY: Haworth Press.

Biracial Women in Therapy: Between the Rock of Gender and the Hard Place of Race examines how physical appearance, cultural knowledge, and cultural stereotypes affect the experience of mixed-race women in belonging to, and being accepted within, their cultures. This unique book combines empirical research, theoretical papers, and first-person narrative to address issues relevant to providing therapy to biracial women and girls, helping therapists and counselors develop a treatment framework based on sociocultural factors. Researchers, practitioners, and academics provide insight into the biracial reality, taking multiple aspects of clients' lives into account rather than looking for simple hierarchies of well-being based on race.

This monograph was also published simultaneously as Women & Therapy, Vol. 27, Nos. 1/2.

Glenn, E. (1995, January) African American women with disabilities: An overview. In S. Walker, K. A. Turner, M. Haile-Michael, A. Vincent, & M. D. Miles (Eds.), Disability and diversity: New leadership for a new era. Washington, DC: President’s Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities and Howard University Research and Training Center for Access to Rehabilitation and Economic Opportunity. Retrieved March 31, 2005 from

The premise of this paper is that African American women with disabilities are victims of the impact of a "triple jeopardy" syndrome: race, gender, and disability. The author makes the point that there is a dire need for research which focuses on the status, needs, and aspirations of African American women with disabilities. The research study under discussion is designed to address the issue of multiple jeopardy in which most African American women with disabilities find themselves.

Han, L., Barrilleaux, & Quadagno, J. (1996). Race and gender differences in the distribution of home and community-based services in Florida. In M. E. Cowart & J. Quadagno (Eds.), Health care reform, long-term care, and the future of an aging society [Feature issue]. Journal of Aging & Social Policy, 7(3/4), 93-107.

This article examines the distribution of home and community-based services (HCBS) under Florida's Medicaid waiver program. Controlling for personal and community characteristics, it was found that gender and race significantly affect the access of the disabled adult population to HCBS services, with women and nonwhites significantly more likely to be receiving HCBS services. At the county level, the likelihood of one's being in the waiver program is contingent on the racial composition and level of segregation of the county. People residing in counties with substantial proportions of nonwhites are less likely to receive HCBS services--whatever their race. However, the higher the rate of racial segregation in the county, the higher the probability that the Medicaid disabled adult population will receive HCBS services. The Medicaid waiver program allows older, disabled black women to remain in their home neighborhoods rather than having to move to predominantly white areas where nursing homes are concentrated. Thus, the HCBS program not only provides them with a form of care that is preferred by most older people but also resolves market problems stemming from the lack of nursing homes in segregated areas by taking advantage of support systems in black households.

This feature issue was published simultaneously as From Nursing Homes to Home Care.

Hanna, W. J., & Rogovsky, E. (1992). On the situation of African American women with physical disabilities. Journal of Applied Rehabilitation Counseling, 23(4), 39-45.

This article examines the experiences of African American women who have physical disabilities. They claim that African American women have a higher instance of physical disability and that their socioeconomic situation is lower than their non-disabled counterparts. The authors use quantitative surveys as well as qualitative interviews to explore factors which seem likely to contribute to the experiences of African American women with disabilities. They conclude that these women experience multiple oppressions, specifically racism, sexism, and ableism. The authors offer as solutions to these inequalities cultural variations in services and taking into account the client's unique needs by offering culturally sensitive supports.

Hassouneh, D. M., & Kulwicki, A. (2007, May). Mental health, discrimination, and trauma in Arab Muslim women living in the US: A pilot study. Mental Health, Religion & Culture, 10(3), 257–262.

In recognition of the need to identify groups of women who may be at high risk for mental disorders and contribute to the knowledge base about ethnic and cultural minority mental health, this paper provides an overview of findings obtained from a small pilot study of mental health in Muslim women living in the US. Findings indicate that Muslim women face numerous stressors that threaten their mental health including discrimination, acculturative stress, and trauma. 

Hawthorne, S. (2001). Disability and diversity: Challenges to normalisation and sameness. In Theme: Women with disabilities. Women in Action, No. 2. Retrieved March 4, 2005 from

The author talks about her experiences as an epileptic and her experiences in the disability rights and women's movement.

Heath, C. D. (2006, April). A womanist approach to understanding and assessing the relationship between spirituality and mental health. Mental Health, Religion & Culture, 9(2), 155-170.

Mental health is a growing concern for Black women. Issues of gender, race, and class contribute to Black women's mental health status. Over-burdened and over-extended, Black women are continuously plagued by stress. Thus, mental health for Black women is an art of self-healing, and spirituality plays a major role in the recovery of their mental health and well-being. The connection between spirituality and mental health enables Black women to remain on life's course in spite of obstacles. However, sociopolitical assessments of how spirituality functions in culturally diverse populations are seldom present in mental health research and provide little if any value to mental health issues specific to Black women. In response, a womanist research agenda is proposed to address Black women's mental health needs. A womanist research agenda is needed to contribute to the process of understanding the liberating function of spirituality in Black women's lives. 

Holmes, R. (2007). African queen: The real life of the Hottentot Venus. New York: Random House. 

Saartjie Baartman was twenty-one years old when she was taken from her native South Africa and shipped to London. Within weeks, the striking African beauty was the talk of the social season of 1810–hailed as “the Hottentot Venus” for her exquisite physique and suggestive semi-nude dance. As her fame spread to Paris, Saartjie became a lightning rod for late Georgian and Napoleonic attitudes toward sex and race, exploitation and colonialism, prurience and science. In African Queen, Rachel Holmes recounts the luminous, heartbreaking story of one woman’s journey from slavery to stardom.

Born into a herding tribe known as the Eastern Cape Khoisan, Saartjie was barely out of her teens when she was orphaned and widowed by colonial war and forced aboard a ship bound for England. A pair of clever, unscrupulous showmen dressed her up in a body stocking with a suggestive fringe and put her on the London stage as a “specimen” of African beauty and sexuality. The Hottentot Venus was an overnight sensation.

But celebrity brought unexpected consequences. Abolitionists initiated a lawsuit to win Saartjie’s freedom, a case that electrified the English public. In Paris, a team of scientists subjected her to a humiliating public inspection as they probed the mystery of her sexual allure. Stared at, stripped, pinched, painted, worshipped, and ridiculed, Saartjie came to symbolize the erotic obsession at the heart of colonialism. But beneath the costumes and the glare of publicity, this young Khoisan woman was a person who had been torn from her own culture and sacrificed to the whims of fashionable Europe.

Nearly two centuries after her death, Saartjie made headlines once again when Nelson Mandela launched a campaign to have her remains returned to the land of her birth. In this brilliant, vividly written book, Rachel Holmes traces the full arc of Saartjie’s extraordinary story–a story of race, eros, oppression, and fame that resonates powerfully today. 

Husaini, B. A., Sherkat, D. E., Levine, R., Bragg, R., Holzer, C., Anderson, K., Cain, V., & Moten, C. (2002). Race, gender, and health care service utilization and costs among Medicare elderly with psychiatric diagnoses. Journal of Aging and Health, 14(1), 79-95.

Objective: To investigate race and gender differences in health care service utilization and costs among the Medicare elderly with psychiatric diagnoses.

Methods: The authors employ a 5% sample of Medicare beneficiaries from Tennessee (N =33, 680), and among those with a psychiatric diagnosis (n =5, 339), they examine health care service utilization and costs by race and gender.

Results: African Americans had significantly higher rates of diagnosis for dementia, organic psychosis, and schizophrenia, whereas Whites had significantly higher rates for mood and anxiety disorders. White and African American men have higher rates of utilization of emergency and inpatient services and lower rates of outpatient utilization compared to White women and African American women. African American men have significantly higher health care costs.

Discussion: The findings suggest that race and gender interact to influence service utilization and preventive care, thereby driving up costs of care, for elderly persons with psychiatric diagnoses. 

Jarman, M. (2006, Fall). Exploring the world of the different in Leslie Marmon Silko's Almanac of the Dead. In J. C. James & C. Wu (Eds.), Race, Ethnicity, Disability, and Literature: Intersections and Interventions [Feature issue]. MELUS, 31(3), 147-168.

Specifically, this essay explores how Silko deploys disability and queer identities to complicate authenticity in two important ways: first, to expand borderland notions of hybrid identity; and second, to ironically expose the cultural erasures of eugenic histories connected to homosexuality and disability-erasures that mirror and complicate current identity politics of border theory. Anzaldua's pioneering work has been rightly celebrated for giving voice to women whose experience had been too long relegated to the margins of political theory, yet, at the same time, by privileging a lesbian, mestiza consciousness as "a more whole perspective, one that includes rather than excludes" (101), another form of exclusivity was immediately invoked. 

Jung-won, L., Jaehee, Y., & Zebrack, B. (2008, June). Acculturation, social support, and quality of life for Korean immigrant breast and gynecological cancer survivors. Ethnicity & Health, 13(3), 243-260.

Objectives. This study examines the direct and/or indirect pathways among acculturation, social support, depressive symptoms, and quality of life (QOL) for Korean immigrant breast and gynecological cancer survivors.

Design. The QOL-Cancer Survivor measure was translated and then administered to 51 survivors. This tool measured acculturation by assessing westernization, language barriers, and length of stay. In addition, the Brief Symptom Inventory-18 was used to assess depressive symptoms. Social support components were conceptualized as comprising both functional social support and social network structures.

Results. Structural equation modeling identified significant relationships among acculturation, social support, depressive symptoms, and QOL. Higher acculturation was associated with positive network structures (larger network size, diversity, and closer social ties) and lower depressive symptoms, which in turn contributed to better QOL. Simultaneously, positive social network structures strongly correlated with better emotional support and, thus, influenced lower depressive symptoms.

Conclusions. The evidence that acculturation influences QOL through social support for Korean immigrant cancer survivors should serve as a rationale for developing psychosocial interventions that enhance immigrant cancer survivors' social participation and adjustment in the unfamiliar US environment. 

Kiger, H. (2003, October/December). Outreach to multiethnic, multicultural, and multilingual women for breast cancer and cervical cancer education and screening: A model using professional and volunteer staffing. Family & Community Health, 26(4), 307-318.

Reaching low-income women from diverse ethnic and cultural communities for the purpose of breast and cervical cancer education and screening is a challenge. This article describes an approach used by Center for Healthy Aging in Santa Monica, California, to implement three projects aimed at Hispanic and African American women to encourage early intervention behaviors. Hispanic and African American volunteers and professional staff work together to establish trusting relationships, join forces with community leaders and develop collaborative approaches to achieve the goal of screening about 1,000 underserved women annually and providing education for an additional 5,000 women. Incorporated in the article are lessons learned about working with this population, the communities in which they live and the use of volunteers for these and other projects.

Kilbourne, B. E., Baltrus, P. A., Williams-Brown, S., Caplan, L., Briggs, N. C., Roberts, K., Husaini, B. A., & Rust, G. E. (2008). Black-white disparities in elderly breast cancer mortality before and after implementation of Medicare benefits for screening mammography. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 19(1), 103-134.

Background. Medicare implemented reimbursement for screening mammography in 1991.

Main Findings. Post-implementation, breast cancer mortality declined faster (p=.0001) among White than among Black elderly women (65+ years). No excess breast cancer deaths occurred among Black elderly compared with White elderly through 1990; over 2,459 have occurred since. Contextual socioeconomic status does not explain differences between counties with lowest Black breast cancer mortality/post-implementation declines in disparity and counties with highest Black breast cancer mortality/widened disparity post-implementation.

Conclusions. The results lead to these hypotheses: (a) Medicare mammography reimbursement was causally associated with declines in elderly mortality and widened elderly Black:White disparity from breast cancer; (b) the latter reflects inherent Black-White differences in risk of breast cancer death; place-specific, unaddressed inequalities in capacity to use Medicare benefits; and/or other factors; (c) previous observations linking poverty with disparities in breast cancer mortality are partly confounded by factors explained by theories of human capability and diffusion of innovation. 

Kirk, G., & Okazawa-Rey, M. (Eds.). (1998). Women’s lives: Multicultural perspectives. Mountain View, CA: Mayfield Publishing Co.

Among the diverse articles in this volume are several representing the viewpoints of women with disabilities, including one on reproductive rights by Marsha Saxton and one on parents with disabilities by Carol Gill. 

Jones, M. (2004). Whisper writing: Teenage girls talk about ableism and sexism in school. New York: Peter Lang Publishing, Inc.

In Whisper Writing three teenage girls share their stories about life as students, as young women with disabilities, and as minorities in a male-dominated special education school culture. Their stories are unique because of their disability label and the experiences that go along with such a label. Trapped in an artificial school culture created by educators, these girls have gained valuable insight about power and subordination both in and out of school. Their narratives, along with extensive observations and interviews with these students and their peers, will both stun and enlighten the reader, prompting questions about current school practices involving segregation, a curriculum of control, and the devaluing of students with disabilities—particularly those with behavior issues.

Koss-Chioino, J. D. (1999). Depression among Puerto Rican women: Culture, etiology, and diagnosis. Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences, 21(3), 330-350.

As in most of the societies that have been studied, more than twice the number of Puerto Rican women compared to men suffer from diagnosed depression. The aim of this article is to examine depression in women in Puerto Rico from epidemiological, etiological, and especially, experiential perspectives. This study includes a comparison of women's complaints around negative mood states in cases within the public mental health system and equivalent cases encountered within a traditional healing system, espiritismo. Several general questions are raised concerning the effect on the etiology of depression of cultural constructions regarding female roles and statuses, reproductive events, and negative life events in general, as well as the value of closely examining the experience of depressed women relative to standard diagnostic assessments in mental health care. 

Lee, E. O., & Oh, H. (2005, September). A wise wife and good mother: Reproductive health and maternity among women with disability in South Korea. Sexuality and Disability, 23(3), 121-144.

As the first national survey on disability and reproductive health in South Korea, the present study was undertaken to describe experiences and needs related to pregnancy, childbirth, and postnatal care among women with physical disability (WWPD). Using a stratified random sampling method, 410 married WWPD between the ages of 18 and 50 participated in the survey regarding respondents’ socio-demographic profiles, disability-related characteristics, and reproductive health during pregnancy, childbirth, and postnatal care. Findings of this study indicated that most respondents wanted to have a child and perceived child care as possible with appropriate social support. Unlike the conventional wisdom and low societal expectation for these women to perform a maternal role, they gave birth and became caregivers for their child(ren) and family members. This study highlights a wide range of barriers experienced by WWPD with regards to taking care of their reproductive health. Implications for practice and policy are discussed. 

Lisi, D. (1993). Found voices: Women, disability and cultural transformation. Women & Therapy, 14(3-4), 195

The cultural consequences of disability on the lives of six women are explored. The relationship between disability rights and feminism and ethnic identity and the impact of disability on the sense of self and personal goals are considered.

Madigan, J. C. (2003, December). Female students of color in special education: Classroom behaviors and perceptions in single-gender and coeducational classrooms. E-Journal of Teaching and Learning in Diverse Settings, 1(1), 75-93. Retrieved July 6, 2005 from

The purpose of this research was to determine whether there were measurable differences in classroom behaviors and school perceptions in adolescent female students identified as learning disabled (LD) in a single-gender special education classroom (SGSEC) and a mixed-gender special education classroom (MGSEC). A mixed design was used; the study was conducted over a four-month period on a secondary level campus in an urban center in northern California . Data were collected using classroom observations, focus group and individual interviews, and document analysis. Participants included four Latina and four African American female students with learning disabilities. Findings indicated that in comparison to Latina and African American female students attending the MGSEC, female students in the SGSEC reported a greater degree of comfort and support from teachers and peers. There were higher rates of classroom participation for Latina students in the SGSEC compared to their counterparts in the MGSEC. Notable differences in classroom participation were not observed between the two groups of African American female students.

Magaña., S., Seltzer, M. M., & Krauss, M. W. (2004, February). Cultural context of caregiving: Differences in depression between Puerto Rican and non-Latina white mothers of adults with mental retardation. Mental Retardation, 42(1), 1–11.

Differences in depression between Puerto Rican and non-Latina White mothers providing care to their adult child with mental retardation were examined. The focus of this study is on how family problems may mediate the effect of the adult's behavior problems on the mother's level of depressive symptoms and how this process differs across the two groups of mothers. As hypothesized, family problems was a stronger predictor of depressive symptoms for Puerto Rican mothers than for non-Latina White mothers. In addition, Puerto Rican mothers were in poorer physical health, which further accounted for differences in depression between the two groups. 

Magubane, Z. (2001). Which bodies matter? Feminism, poststructuralism, race, and the curious theoretical odyssey of the "Hottentot Venus.” Gender & Society, 15(6), 816-834.

This article critiques dominant feminist analyses of the "Hottentot Venus." It argues that these analyses of the construction of Black women as "other," which borrow heavily from poststructuralism, make race and gender transhistorical and metaphysical constructs. The article critiques what has become the theoretical orthodoxy on the "Hottentot Venus." It takes issue with two presumptions in particular: first, that there was a core image of the Black woman in the nineteenth century, and second, that the fear of the anatomy of the "other" is the source of negative representations of Black sexuality. The article proposes an alternative way of understanding the construction of Black women in colonial discourse. It argues that social relations, rather than psychological dispositions, determine how bodies are seen and perceived. 

MaloneBeach, E. E., Skeel, R. L., & Inungu, J. N. (2004). African American women: A life course of care. Home Health Care Services Quarterly, 23(2), 1-18.

Twenty-five years of research on family care to dependent elders has produced a theoretically sophisticated understanding of the process of family caregiving. Although caregiving models initially were developed and tested on predominantly White samples, more recent work has applied these models to African American caregivers. This investigation builds on the comparative perspective by describing elder care in African American families through the eyes of the culture in which it occurs. Thirty-two African American caregivers were interviewed and asked to discuss their caregiving careers from a life course perspective. Qualitative narratives described three pathways to care: elder care only, limited life course of care, and live course of care. Recognition of the various pathways to care will enlighten tailored interventions.

Martínez, M. E., Nielson, C. M., Nagle, R., Lopez, A. M., Kim, C., & Thompson, P.
Breast cancer among Hispanic and non-Hispanic white women in Arizona. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 18(4), 130-145.

Background. Breast cancer in Hispanic women is poorly understood and data on tumor hormone receptor status in this population are limited.

Methods. Using data from the Arizona Cancer Registry, we assessed differences in tumor characteristics between Hispanic and non-Hispanic White (NHW) women using logistic regression modeling. 25,494 invasive breast cancer cases (23,657 NHWs and 1,837 Hispanics) reported to the cancer registry in 1995 to 2003 were included in the analysis.

Results. In age-adjusted models, compared with NHW women, Hispanics were more likely to have high-grade cancers, larger tumors, a greater number of positive lymph nodes, and advanced stage at diagnosis. Hispanic women were less likely to have tumors that are both estrogen and progesterone receptor positive (ER+/PR+), particularly those under age 60.

Conclusions. The profile of tumor presentation in Hispanic women in Arizona is consistent with a more aggressive disease pattern and less favorable prognosis than that of NHWs. 

McClain, C. V. (2002, September-October). The triple oppression: Disability, race & gender. Disability World, Issue No. 15. Retrieved

“Discrimination on the basis of disability is often linked to racial, class and gender dissonance. Research has indicated that the consequences of disablement are particularly serious for women. Traditionally, women with disabilities are discriminated against on more than one ground: race, gender and disability, and often they have less access to essential services such as health care, education and vocational rehabilitation.”

McDonald, K. E., Keys, C. B., & Balcazar, F. E. (2007, March). Disability, race/ethnicity and gender: Themes of cultural oppression, acts of individual resistance. American Journal of Community Psychology, 39(1), 145-161.

Community psychologists have called for research on human diversity and interactions between individuals and society with a focus on oppression. This study examines learning disabilities as they co-occur with other sociopolitical minority statuses. We examined dominant cultural narratives of and individual responses to learning disability, race/ethnicity and gender identified by low-income men and women of color with learning disabilities. Our qualitative analysis identified cultural narratives that suggest that: (1a) individuals with learning disabilities are perceived as having an illegitimate impairment and being of lower intellectual ability and unworthy; (1b) having an invisible disability facilitates passing as nondisabled, thereby lessening disability discrimination from within racial/ethnic groups; (1c) having a learning disability detracts from positive gender expectations and exacerbates negative ones; and (1d) gender and racial/ethnic narratives are relevant for individuals with learning disabilities. Our analysis also identified two overarching individual acts of resistance used to thwart internalization of oppressive cultural narratives: (2a) removing self from oppressive environments and (2b) reframing dominant cultural narratives (including discounting the validity of negative messages, using negative narratives for motivation, and engaging in positive self talk). We discuss findings in relation to extant research and theory and consider implications for research, theory, and practice. 

Miltiades, H. B., & Pruchno, R. (2002, February). The effect of religious coping on caregiving appraisals of mothers of adults with developmental disabilities. The Gerontologist, 42(1), 82-92.

Researchers explored the association between race and religious coping on caregiving appraisals for mothers who co-reside with an adult child with mental retardation.

Mollow, A. (2006, Fall). "When Black women start going on Prozac": Race, gender, and mental illness in Meri Nana-Ama Danquah's Willow Weep for Me. In J. C. James & C. Wu (Eds.), Special Issue: Race, Ethnicity, Disability, and Literature. MELUS, 31(3), 67-99.

“Meri Nana-Ama Danquah's Willow Weep for Me: A Black Woman's Journey Through Depression (1998) is a first-person narrative by an author who, without identifying as `disabled’ or signaling any alliance with the disability rights movement, describes the ‘suffering’ her ‘illness’ caused and recounts her ‘triumph’ over it, an overcoming achieved through a combination of ‘courage,’ ‘resilience,’ prescription drugs, and other medical interventions….. Examining such intersectionality in Danquah's memoir complicates aspects of some disabled people's critiques of the medical or psychiatric model of mental illness; for many African American women with depression, lack of access to health care, rather than involuntary administration of it, is the most oppressive aspect of the contemporary polities of mental illness” (p. 67). 

Mowbray, C. T., Bybee D., Hollingsworth L., Goodkind, S., & Oyserman, D. (2005, March). Living arrangements and social support: Effects on the well-being of mothers with mental illness. Social Work Research, 29(1), 41-55.

This article examines the effects of living arrangements on the well-being of mothers with a serious mental illness. Analyses of data from a National Institute of Mental Health-funded study of an urban, primarily African American sample of 379 mothers with mental illness revealed few differences in parenting or social functioning between mothers living with their children and a spouse or partner and those living with their children only. However, mothers living with their children and extended family had significantly better outcomes than women in the other two living arrangements. Structural equation modeling analyses indicated that living with relatives significantly related to mothers' well-being (social functioning and parenting) above and beyond relatives' provision of social support. Multilevel modeling revealed racial differences in the effects of living with relatives on functioning and parenting stress: Effects were positive for African American mothers but mixed for white American mothers.

Muñoz, J. E. (2006). Feeling brown, feeling down: Latina affect, the performativity of race, and the depressive position. Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, 31(3), 675-688.

“Depression has become one of the dominant affective positions addressed within the cultural field of contemporary global capitalism. However, such a blanket statement requires fine-tuning. While art and media that depict the affective contours of depression have certainly become more prevalent, it is nonetheless important to be attentive to the ways in which the current historical moment is able to mimetically render various depictions of the problem of depression that plagues the contemporary citizen subject with a crypto-universalist script. Certainly depression is gendered. Female depression and male depression resonate quite differently. While female depression is more squarely framed as a problem, the depression that plagues men is often described as a full-on condition, registering beyond the sphere of the individual, linked to a sort of angst and longing that are often described as endemic to postmodernism. However, that statement also requires some amending insofar as such a distinction reproduces a default white subject. The topic of depression has not often been discussed in relation to the question of racial formations in critical theory. This essay dwells on a particular depiction of depression that most certainly speaks to the general moment but resists the pull of crypto-universalism. The art project at the center of this essay considers how depression itself is formed and organized around various historical and material contingencies that include race, gender, and sex” (p. 675). 

National Aboriginal Network on Disability. (1992). Voices in the wilderness: Aboriginal women and disabilities. Cornwall, ON: Author. Retrieved March 30, 2005 from

This paper identifies issues affecting Aboriginal women with disabilities and Aboriginal women who are primary caregivers of disabled relatives. It is the result of a literature review, discussions with Aboriginal women and a two-day "Aboriginal Women's Circle on Disability" held in Ottawa in March 1992. The paper also contains recommendations based on the Women's Circle discussions.

National Women’s Law Center. (2003, January). Women of color and Social Security. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved April 6, 2005 from

Women of color have a special stake in Social Security reform. The debate over the future of Social Security reform has not fully addressed the unique circumstances of women of color. With their low lifetime earnings and long life spans on average, African American and Hispanic women benefit greatly from Social Security’s progressive benefit formula and lifelong, inflation-adjusted benefits. They also draw disproportionately on Social Security’s benefits for disabled workers and for the families of workers who become disabled or die prematurely. 

Ndao-Brumblay, S. K., & Green, C. R. (2005, October). Racial differences in the physical and psychosocial health among black and white women with chronic pain. Journal of the National Medical Association, 97(10), 1369-1377.

Gender-based differences in pain epidemiology, pain threshold, attitudes toward pain management, coping styles and social roles are well described, yet little is known about the chronic pain experience in women or the role race plays. A retrospective analysis of self-reported data using a secondary clinical database was performed to elucidate the relationship between race and pain severity, depression, physical disability, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as well as affective distress in women with chronic pain. White (n=1,088) and black (n=104) adult women were compared based on their responses to the McGill Pain Questionnaire, Beck Depression Inventory, Pain Disability Index, Posttraumatic Chronic Pain Test and items from the West-Haven Yale Multidisciplinary Pain Inventory. After accounting for sociodemographic, medical, psychological and physical confounders, there was no significant race effect for pain severity or affective distress. However, black women with chronic pain experience more physical impairments than white women with chronic pain (beta = 4.622; p<0.005). Except for the family/home responsibilities, similar differences were found on all PDI subscales. We also found that disability mediates the race-depression relationship such that black women are comparatively more vulnerable to depression as a result of higher disability. Due to the economic, social and emotional impact that disability has on women with chronic pain and their families, these findings have significant implications for chronic pain research as well as its management in black women. 

Newman, P. A., Williams, C. C., Massaquoi, N., Brown, M., & Logie, C. (2008, August). HIV prevention for Black women: Structural barriers and opportunities. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 19(3), 829-841.

Black women bear a disproportionate burden of HIV/AIDS in North America. The purpose of this investigation was to explore Black Canadian women’s perspectives on HIV risk and prevention. Four 90-minute focus groups (n = 26) and six key informant interviews were conducted in Toronto with Black women of African and Caribbean descent and low socioeconomic status. Data analysis revealed a number of potent barriers to existing HIV preventive interventions: stigma, cultural disconnections, lack of engagement of Black religious institutions, and multiple intersecting forms of discrimination. Recommended HIV prevention opportunities included the Black church, mainstreaming, health care providers, and ethno-specific agencies. HIV prevention strategies for North American Black women, rather than focusing on HIV and individual risk behaviors, may benefit from a primary focus on social and structural factors (e.g., promoting gender equality, economic opportunity, women-controlled prevention technologies and combating racism in health care) thereby integrating HIV prevention into the larger context of community health and survival. 

O'Hara, J.., & Martin, H. (2003, March). Parents with learning disabilities: A study of gender and cultural perspectives in East London. British Journal of Learning Disabilities, 31(1), 18-24.

The rights of people with learning disabilities to marry and have a family is at the heart of the Government's new strategy (Valuing People), yet there are few integrated and co-ordinated services to meet their needs. All too often, learning disability is the sole reason why children are removed from their biological parents. Whilst there is a small but growing literature on the quality and extent of the social supports available, little attention has been paid to culture and gender. This study analyses data on parents who came into contact with the specialist community learning disability health team in East London over a 5-year period in respect of culture, gender and outcomes. 

Palmer, C. J. (2003). Body mass index, self-esteem, and suicide risk in clinically depressed African American and White American females. Journal of Black Psychology, 29(4), 408-428.

Self-esteem and depression, as well as depression and body mass index (BMI), have consistently been found to be significantly associated for African American and White American females. The results are dissimilar when BMI and self-esteem are studied. Historically, the relationship between BMI and self-esteem is weak or nonexistent for African American females; however, for White American females, the relationship is usually significant. The goal of this study was to determine whether clinically depressed, healthy-weight, overweight, and obese females would differ significantly on self-esteem and suicide risk measures. In a voluntary hospital-based inpatient psychiatric unit, 165 clinically depressed females completed the self-esteem rating scale and the suicide risk scale. Healthy-weight, overweight, and obese African American females did not differ significantly on measures of self-esteem and suicide risk. However, depressed, obese White American females had significantly lower self-esteem and increased suicide risk than depressed healthy-weight and overweight White American females. Implications of the current results are discussed. 

Peake Andrasik, M., Rose, R., Pereira, D., & Antoni, M. (2008, August). Barriers to cervical cancer screening among low-income HIV-positive African American women. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 19(3), 912-925.

This study elucidates the perspective of low-income HIV-positive African American women who have not received cervical cancer screening for five or more years, on the barriers they face in accessing and using reproductive health care. We focused on how women who live in a severely economically depressed and racially segregated neighborhood experience barriers to cervical cancer screening. Andersen’s Behavioral Model of Health Services Use, which allows for the organization of conditions and situations that bar utilization of health services, served as the theoretical framework. Findings from individual semi-structured interviews with 35 participants revealed the importance of psychological and emotional barriers as well as the more commonly reported economic, social, and health care system barriers. We suggest how access to care for this population can be increased by including psychological and emotional components in intervention efforts. 

Peek, M. E., Sayad, J. V., & Markwardt, R. (2008, November). Fear, fatalism and breast cancer screening in low-income African-American women: The role of clinicians and the health care system. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 23(11), 1847-1853.

Background: African-American women have the highest breast cancer death rates of all racial/ethnic groups in the US. Reasons for these disparities are multi-factorial, but include lower mammogram utilization among this population. Cultural attitudes and beliefs, such as fear and fatalism, have not been fully explored as potential barriers to mammography among African-American women.

Objective: To explore the reasons for fear associated with breast cancer screening among low-income African-American women.

Methods: We conducted four focus groups (n  = 29) among a sample of African-American women at an urban academic medical center. We used trained race-concordant interviewers with experience discussing preventive health behaviors. Each interview/focus group was audio-taped, transcribed verbatim and imported into Atlas.ti software. Coding was conducted using an iterative process, and each transcription was independently coded by members of the research team.

Main Results: Several major themes arose in our exploration of fear and other psychosocial barriers to mammogram utilization, including negative health care experiences, fear of the health care system, denial and repression, psychosocial issues, delays in seeking health care, poor health outcomes and fatalism. We constructed a conceptual model for understanding these themes.

Conclusions: Fear of breast cancer screening among low-income African-American women is multi-faceted, and reflects shared experiences within the health care system as well as the psychosocial context in which women live. This study identifies a prominent role for clinicians, particularly primary care physicians, and the health care system to address these barriers to mammogram utilization within this population. 

Peterson, A. (2006, December). An African-American woman with disabilities: The intersection of gender, race and disability. Disability & Society, 21(7), 721-734. 

This qualitative study explores the educational experiences of an African-American adult woman with disabilities. The intersections of gender, race and disability are theorized through the lenses of disability, feminist and critical theory. Specifically, I address the following three questions. What are the experiences of an African-American woman with disabilities in schools? How might these experiences be theorized? Do these experiences offer new ways of understanding oppression that may contribute to empowering individuals labeled with multiple, intersecting identities? 

Petersen, A. J. (2009, October). “Ain't nobody gonna get me down”: An examination of the educational experiences of four African American women labeled with disabilities. Equity & Excellence in Education, 42(4), 412-426.

This study used qualitative research methods to explore the educational experiences of four African American women with disabilities, revealing how each participant developed a critical consciousness in response to the dominant ideology surrounding the discourses of African American, woman, and disabled. The development of a critical consciousness led participants to counter the oppressive nature of their educational experiences by engaging in acts of resistance. Recommendations are made with regard to how K-18 educators might support and capitalize upon students' critical consciousness to facilitate equitable classroom communities. 

Porter, E. J., Ganong, L. H., & Armer, J. M. (2000). The church family and kin: An older rural Black woman's support network and preferences for care providers. Qualitative Health Research, 10(4), 452-470.

Although kin and church are considered premier support sources for rural elders, few scholars have undertaken descriptive studies to explore the nature of rural Black elders' support networks and their preferences for in-home service providers. In the case study described in this article, methods of support network analysis and descriptive phenomenology were used to analyze data from five lengthy, open-ended interviews with a 94-year-old rural Black woman. The various groups and individuals of her network are labeled in her words, the network's supportive functions are described, and preferences for providers are noted. In addition, the varying structures of her home care experience with the support network members are described. Her attempts to voice and exercise her preferences for in-home service providers are explained in terms of two contrasting processes: preference uptake and preference suppression. Based on these findings, implications for appraising the appropriateness of rural elders' in-home services are discussed.

Pruchno, R., Patrick, J. H., & Burant, C. J. (1997, October). African American and White mothers of adults with chronic disabilities: Caregiving burden and satisfaction. Family Relations, 46(4), 335-346.

A model is developed and tested that explains the effects of race on the caregiving experience by patterning relationships between race and several causal agents.

Revicki, D. A., Siddique, J., Frank, L., Chung, J. Y., Green, B. L., Krupnick, J., Prasad, M., & Miranda, J. (2005). Cost-effectiveness of evidence-based pharmacotherapy or cognitive behavior therapy compared with community referral for major depression in predominantly low-income minority women. Archives of General Psychiatry, 62(8), 868-875.

Background: Few clinical trials have evaluated interventions for major depressive disorder in samples of low-income minority women, and little is known about the cost-effectiveness of depression interventions for this population.

Objective: To evaluate the cost-effectiveness of pharmacotherapy or cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) compared with community referral for major depression in low-income minority women.

Design, Setting, and Participants: A randomized clinical trial was conducted in 267 women with current major depression.

Interventions: Participants were randomly assigned to pharmacotherapy (paroxetine hydrochloride or bupropion hydrochloride) (n = 88), CBT (n = 90), or community referral (n = 89).

Main Outcome Measures: The main outcomes were intervention and health care costs, depression-free days, and quality-adjusted life years based on Hamilton Depression Rating Scale scores and Medical Outcomes Study 36-Item Short-Form Health Survey summary scores for 12 months. Cost-effectiveness ratios were estimated to compare incremental patient outcomes with incremental costs for pharmacotherapy relative to community referral and for CBT relative to community referral.

Results: Compared with the community referral group, the pharmacotherapy group had significantly lower adjusted mean Hamilton Depression Rating Scale scores from the 3rd month through the 10th month (P = .04 to P<.001) of the study, and the CBT group had significantly lower adjusted mean scores from the 5th month through the 10th month (P = .03 to P = .049). There were significantly more depression-free days in the pharmacotherapy group (mean, 39.7; 95% confidence interval, 12.9-66.5) and the CBT group (mean, 25.80; 95% confidence interval, 0.04-51.50) than in the community referral group. The cost per additional depression-free day was $24.65 for pharmacotherapy and $27.04 for CBT compared with community referral.

Conclusions: Effective treatment for depression in low-income minority women reduces depressive symptoms but increases costs compared with community referral. The pharmacotherapy and CBT interventions were cost-effective relative to community referral for the health care system. 

Reyes-Blanes, M. E. (2001). Puerto Rican mothers of young children with disabilities: A comparison of perceived support systems. The International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, 21(3), 1-11.

This study compared family sources of support perceived by 55 Puerto Rican mothers of young children with disabilities residing in Puerto Rico and 39 of their counterparts living in Florida. The Family support scale (FSS) was used in the interview process to measure respectively mothers' perception of sources of support. Multiple regression analyses indicated mothers from the PR sample perceived significantly more sources of support than mothers in the Florida sample. Mothers' perceived patterns and sources of support are described. Implications for schools, agencies, and service providers working with Puerto Rican families of young children with disabilities are discussed. 

Rimmer, J. H., Rubin, S. S., & Braddock, D. (2000, February). Barriers to exercise in African American women with physical disabilities. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 81(2) 182-188.

Objective: To examine what factors African American women with one or more physical disabilities perceive as barriers to exercise and how they rank them.

Study Design: Data were collected through telephone interview using a newly developed instrument (Barriers to Physical Exercise and Disability [B-PED]) that addressed issues related to physical activity and the subjects' disability.

Subjects: Fifty subjects were asked questions about their participation and interest in structured exercise.

Results: The four major barriers were cost of the exercise program (84.2%), lack of energy (65.8%), transportation (60.5%), and not knowing where to exercise (57.9%). Barriers commonly reported in nondisabled persons (e.g., lack of time, boredom, too lazy) were not observed in our sample. Only 11% of the subjects reported that they were not interested in starting an exercise program. The majority of subjects (81.5%) wanted to join an exercise program but were restricted by the barriers reported.

Conclusion: African American women with a physical disability are interested in becoming more active but are limited in doing so because of their inability to overcome several barriers to increased physical activity participation.

Rimmer, J. H., Rubin, S. S., Braddock, D., & Hedman, G. (1999, April). Physical activity patterns of African-American women with a severe physical disability. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 31(4), 613-618.

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to survey the exercise and activity patterns of African-American women with severe physical disabilities (N = 50).

Methods: The Physical Activity and Disability Survey (PADS) was created for subjects who have a severe limitation in movement and function (e.g., limited ability to stand or walk, needs an assistive aid to ambulate, needs assistance with activities of daily living). Reliability data were obtained on the PADS for interrater, test-retest, and internal consistency on the two subscales (Exercise and Activity). The Exercise subscale had an interrater reliability of 0.83 and test/retest reliability of 0.85. The Activity subscale had an interrater reliability of 0.68 and test/retest reliability of 0.66. Cronbach's alpha for internal consistency was 0.78 for the Exercise subscale and 0.68 for the Activity subscale.

Results: Results showed very low levels of exercise and general activity patterns in African-American women with physical disabilities. Only 8.2% of the sample participated in leisure-time physical activity, and only 10% engaged in aerobic exercise three or more days per week for at least 15 min. Unstructured physical activity (e.g., work-related activity, housework, gardening, shopping) was nearly absent.

Conclusion: Our data suggest that the extremely low levels of self-reported physical activity in African-American women with severe physical disabilities expose them to a higher risk of secondary health conditions.

Rueda, R., Monzo, L., Shapiro, J., Gomez, J., & Blacher, J. (2005, Summer). Cultural models of transition: Latina mothers of young adults with developmental disabilities. Exceptional Children, 71(4), 401-414.

This study used several focus groups to examine culturally based variation in attitudes, beliefs, and meanings of transition. Sixteen Latina mothers of young adults with disabilities participated in the study, recruited from an agency serving low-income, predominantly Spanish-speaking communities. Data analysis identified five primary themes: (a) basic life skills and social adaptation, (b) the importance of the family and home rather than individualism and independence, (c) the importance of the mother's role and expertise in decision making, (d) access to information; and (e) dangers of the outside world. The overarching theme was a view of transition as home-centered, sheltered adaptation as opposed to a model emphasizing independent productivity. The findings and the implications for future research and practice are discussed. 

Ryan, C. (2004, June). Am I not a woman: The rhetoric of breast cancer stories in African American women's popular periodicals. Journal of Medical Humanities, 25(2), 129-150.

Representations of breast cancer are examined in three popular women's periodicals targeting African American readers: Ebony, Essence, and Black Elegance. The researcher focuses specifically on representations that reflect certain ideas/ideals about the sharing and creating of information about the disease and related issues, such as health care and body image. Magazine selections are analyzed and critiqued according to the epistemological principles outlined by Patricia Hill Collins in Black Feminist Thought. The author calls for further research into how and why particular social and cultural groups consume information about health and illness in particular ways. 

Samuels, E. (2006, Fall). "A complication of complaints": Untangling disability, race, and gender in William and Ellen Craft's Running A Thousand Miles for Freedom. In J. C. James & C. Wu (Eds.), Special Issue: Race, Ethnicity, Disability, and Literature. MELUS, 31(3), 15-47.

“In 1845, Ellen Craft and her husband William escaped from slavery in Georgia by traveling disguised as a "white invalid gentlemen" and his valet. After a four-day journey, they arrived on free soil in Philadelphia and soon became prominent in the Boston based abolitionist movement, telling their story to large audiences and gaining swift fame, which eventually led to pursuit by Southern agents seeking to re-enslave them. The Crafts escaped once again to England, where they authored a narrative of their escape, Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom, published in 1860 by London's William Tweedie. The Crafts' narrative has received a significant amount of critical attention, much of which has focused upon the racial and gender passing perpetrated by Ellen Craft, while a secondary concern has been the prominence of the Crafts on the abolition circuit before the Civil War. However, no historian or literary critic has yet grappled with the presence of disability in the narrative; while the fact that Ellen pretended to be disabled is often mentioned in the course of other concerns, disability is never treated as a social identity which can be manipulated or interpreted as can race or gender. Thus, critics such as Barbara McCaskill contextualize the narrative by listing other examples of fugitive slave cross-dressing, but do not appear concerned with the equally significant context of feigned disability and illness among enslaved African Americans (McCaskill, "Yours" 509-10). While such omissions are present throughout nearly all scholarship on American slavery, I find them particularly glaring in the Crafts' example because of the repeated and essential function of disability in their narrative” (p. 15). 

Sands, T. (2005, November). A voice of our own: Advocacy by women with disability in Australia and the Pacific. Gender and Development, 13(3), 51-62.

Women with disability do not generally benefit from international human-rights laws and agreements, or from development discourse and practice. The interconnection between disability and gender identity is largely invisible within women's rights, disability rights, and development agendas. For women with disability in the Asia and Pacific region, this is particularly evident for Pacific women; within Australia, for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women. This article discusses these issues in the context of PWDA's advocacy approach to disability, gender, and development. It also describes PWDA's engagement with women's human-rights projects, which has formed part of its advocacy strategy to develop a voice for Australian and Pacific women with disability.

Scott, K. M. (2003, September). The Initiative on Triple Jeopardy: African American women with disabilities. Columbus, OH: Ohio Legal Rights Services. Retrieved March 30, 2005 from

The "Triple Jeopardy" initiative was designed to give voice to African-American women with developmental disabilities, between the ages of 18 and 60, who are unserved or underserved. Through a series of focus groups, the initiative sought to (1) stimulate public awareness of the issues surrounding women in "triple jeopardy", (2) identify gaps and barriers that exist for these women, and (3) provide the Ohio Developmental Disabilities Council with recommendations on how best to meet the formal and informal community support needs of the women. The information gathered through the focus groups was also compiled as a basis for ideas on possible research needed on the effectiveness of existing formal/informal community supports.

The report provides a backdrop for understanding what is a developmental disability, and then chronicles the stories of the women participating in the focus groups. Finally, the report presents the proposed recommendations.

This report is also available as a PDF file at:

Shapiro, J., Monzó, L. D., Rueda, R., Gomez, J. A., & Blacher, J. (2004, February). Alienated advocacy: Perspectives of Latina mothers of young adults with developmental disabilities on service systems. Mental Retardation, 42(1), 37-54.

Although collaborative partnership between parents and professionals is a cornerstone of the special education and service systems, this relationship exists more as an ideal, especially when low-income, culturally diverse families are involved. Through three focus groups, we examined the beliefs of 16 low-income Latina mothers of young adults with developmental disabilities about their relationships with the educational and service delivery systems. Primary concerns identified were (a) poor communication, (b) low effort in providing services, (c) negative attitudes of professionals toward the client–children, (d) negative treatment of parents by professionals, and (e) the mother's role as central to the well-being of her child. Mothers tended to adopt a posture of alienated advocacy in relation to their child's educational and service needs. 

Skinner, D., Bailey Jr., D. B., Correa, V., & Rodriguez, P. (1999). Narrating self and disability: Latino mothers' construction of identities vis-a-vis their child with special needs. Exceptional Children, 65(4), 481-495.

We examine how 150 Latino mothers of young children with developmental disabilities use narratives to express and create self-understandings vis-a-vis their child. The purpose is twofold: (a) to introduce narrative as a tool that people use to make sense of disability, and (b) to demonstrate how these mothers draw on cultural beliefs and the narrative form to construct meanings of self in relationship to disability. An analysis of spontaneous narratives of self and disability reveal that the majority of mothers portrayed themselves as good mothers in line with larger cultural notions, and viewed their child as bringing about positive transformations in their lives. We end by suggesting ways that narrative analysis could be used in future research and practice. 

Solomon, S. E. (1993, March-April). Women and physical distinction: A review of the literature and suggestions for intervention. In M. Fine (Ed.), Women with disabilities: Found voices [Feature issue]. Women and Therapy, 14(3/4), 91-103.

With few exceptions, the special concerns and status of women with physical distinctions (physical disability and facial disfigurement) have been largely ignored in the disability literature. Women with physical distinctions are perceived negatively and are devalued and marginalized in our culture. They face a double discrimination due to their gender and their disability. The situation is even more acute for ethnic minority women with physical distinctions. This study reviews the literature on women with physical distinctions and explores some of the issues for ethnic minority women with physical distinctions. Recommendations are offered for feminist therapists who work with this population. 

Stanford, A. F. (2003). Bodies in a broken world: Women novelists of color and the politics of medicine. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press.

In this multidisciplinary study, Ann Folwell Stanford reads literature written by U.S. women of color to propose a rethinking of modern medical practice, arguing that personal health and social justice are inextricably linked. Drawing on feminist ethics to explore the work of eleven novelists, Stanford challenges medicine to position itself more deeply within the communities it serves, especially the poor and marginalized. However, she also argues that medicine must recognize its limits and join forces with the nonmedical community in the struggle for social justice.

In literary representations of physical and emotional states of illness and health, Stanford identifies issues related to public health, medical ethics, institutionalized racism, women's health, domestic abuse, and social justice that are important to discussions about how to improve health and health care. She argues that in either direct or indirect ways, the eleven novelists considered push us to see health not only as an individual condition but also as a complex network of individual, institutional, and social changes in which wellness can be a possibility for the majority rather than a privileged few.

The novelists whose works are discussed are Toni Cade Bambara, Paule Marshall, Gloria Naylor, Leslie Marmon Silko, Toni Morrison, Louise Erdrich, Sandra Cisneros, Bebe Moore Campbell, Sapphire, Ana Castillo, and Octavia Butler. 

Stephenson, W. (1983). Roxene. Calgary, Alberta: Detselig Enterprises.

This is a story about Roxene, a Canadian girl with mental retardation of native Indian origin. It is a true story of Roxene's life which describes her childhood and her teenage years. Most of the book focuses on Roxene's relationship with Margaret vanBiert, who "adopts" Roxene and becomes her friend, advocate, and legal guardian. Roxene is not very good with spoken words and her story is mostly told in vanBiert's words with additions based on the author's observations. We learn about Roxene's childhood with her family and how she, at the age of eight, ended up as a ward of the courts and was moved to a group home far away from her family who lived on an Indian reservation. The description of the friendship between Roxene and Margaret is the best part of this story.

Stacciarini, J. R. (2008, July). Focus groups: Examining a community-based group intervention for depressed Puerto Rican women. Issues in Mental Health Nursing, 29(7), 679-700.

Puerto Ricans manifest high rates of depression but avoid seeking treatment. The purpose of this pilot was to learn directly from Puerto Rican women how culturally appropriate they would consider a proposed community-based intervention for treating depression. Interactive activities were reviewed by two focus groups of women (N = 16), all working in community-based health programs. All activities (e.g., writing, role playing, and music) except individual drawing were deemed appropriate. Categories that emerged were family/community values, mainland/non-mainland cultural variances, communication style, religion, education/occupational variances, health beliefs, Puerto Rican traditions/customs, emotions, and coping skills. Categories provided guidance for refining a community-based intervention for treating depression in Puerto Rican women. 

Stubblefield, A. (2007, Spring). Beyond the pale: Tainted whiteness, cognitive disability, and eugenic sterilization. In A. Bailey & J. Zita (Eds.), The Reproduction of Whiteness: Race and the Regulation of the Gendered Body [Special issue]. Hypatia, 22(2).

The aim of the eugenics movement in the United States during the first half of the twentieth century was to prevent the degeneration of the white race. A central tactic of the movement was the involuntary sterilization of people labeled as feebleminded. An analysis of the practice of eugenic sterilization provides insight into how the concepts of gender, race, class, and dis/ability are fundamentally intertwined. I argue that in the early twentieth century, the concept of feeblemindedness came to operate as an umbrella concept that linked off-white ethnicity, poverty, and gendered conceptions of lack of moral character together and that feeblemindedness thus understood functioned as the signifier of tainted whiteness. 

Tang, T. N., & Tang, C. S. (2001, September). Gender role internalization, multiple roles, and Chinese women's mental health. Psychology of Women, 25(3), 181-196.

The influence of gender role internalization as a moderator in the relationship between women's multiple roles and psychological distress was investigated. Study 1 identified three components of gender role internalization, which were labeled "Traditional Ideal Person," "Self-sacrifice," and "Competence without Complaint," and found that it did not overlap with existing gender-typed measures among 128 female Chinese university students. The multidimensionality of gender role internalization was confirmed in Study 2 among a sample of 225 women in the paid Hong Kong workforce. As expected, role quality was a better predictor of psychological distress than role quantity. Gender role internalization accounted for significant portions of explained variance even after taking role quality into account. Internalization of Traditional Ideal Person and Competence without Complaint messages exacerbated distress in certain areas when role quality was low. However, internalization of Self-Sacrifice messages mitigated distress for Chinese women with low work quality.

Tanjasiri, S. P., Kagawa-Singer, M. & Nguyen, T. (2002). Collaborative research as an essential component for addressing cancer disparities among Southeast Asian and Pacific Islander Women. Health Promotion Practice, 3(2), 144-154.

A fundamental component of community-based health promotion efforts to eliminate disparities is the mobilization of community involvement to address not only individual but also systemic and political causes of inequalities in health. The participatory action research (PAR) paradigm is well suited to address these multilevel inequalities in research and evaluation experienced by many ethnic and racial communities. In this article, a case study of a project to reduce health disparities in breast and cervical cancer among seven Southeast Asian and Pacific Islander communities in Southern California is presented. The authors applied a PAR framework to the process of needs assessment and program planning to understand and address the complex and multilevel factors that contribute to the problem of disparate breast and cervical cancer screening rates in these communities. Finally, the authors describe the lessons that were learned about how to promote collaborative research as an essential element in the design of projects and studies to address ethnic disparities in health outcomes for breast and cervical cancer.

Tejeda, S., Thompson, B., Coronado, G. D., & Rees, J. M. (2006, November). A cervical cancer curriculum for Hispanic adolescents in rural high schools: A pilot study. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 17(4), 734-744.

We assessed the effectiveness of a one-hour curriculum about cervical cancer for high school students. The curriculum was developed and delivered to 142 female students in the 9th to 12th grade at two high schools in rural Eastern Washington State. Self-administered questionnaires assessed changes in knowledge, beliefs, and attitudes related to cervical cancer and Pap smears. Baseline results from a predominantly Hispanic adolescent sample (73%) indicated low pre-test knowledge and negative beliefs and attitudes. Post-test results indicated that there was a significant change in the intervention group for knowledge questions when compared with the control group. Only some changes to more positive beliefs and attitudes about cervical cancer and screening were significant in the post-test. The findings suggest that a culturally appropriate high school curriculum may inform young Hispanic women about important cervical cancer screening practices. 

Thomson, R. G. (1995). Integrating disability studies into the existing curriculum: The example of 'Women and Literature' at Howard University. Radical Teacher, 47, 15-21.

Part of a special section on Disability Studies. The writer discusses how she attempts to introduce Disability Studies in the context of a sustained focus on racial difference. She notes that her aim in teaching Disability Studies is to confound definitions of "we" and "they," which imply a victim/perpetrator and a normal/abnormal relationship between the disabled and the nondisabled. She proposes that Disability Studies should be taught as an integrated part of all courses and indicates that she integrates disability issues into all of the courses she teaches as an English professor. Her "Women in Literature" course at Howard University focuses on the valuing of bodies on the basis of their appearance; uses material from various disciplines that are not explicitly Disability Studies to elucidate the way that disability, along with other stigmatized identities, operates in Western cultures; and offers literary and cultural analyses to reveal the ways that social relations produce the cultural distinctions of disability, race, gender, and class.

Turmusani, M. (2001). Disabled women in Islam: Middle Eastern perspective. Journal of Religion, Disability & Health, 5(2/3), 73-85.

Western debates have increasingly included women issues in their analysis. These debates however, proved to have little relevance to women with impairments and are in fact being held under scrutiny by feminist writers. The position of disabled women in other cultures remains especially one of the most under-researched areas within current discourses on women and disability issues. This presentation fills the gap and presents an account based on textual analysis of disabled women in Islam and Muslim culture. It argues that disabled women in Islam have a lowly position in society due to historical perception related to both the inferior position of women in Islam as well as the lowly position of disabled people in society in general. Understanding the position of disabled women thus requires close investigation into these two positions within their particular socio-economic and historical contexts. Despite the presence of various feminists' movements in Muslim countries these days, these have not included much debate on disability and disabled women within their mainstream analysis. The paper concludes by calling for existing theoretical perspectives to include the analysis of disabled women within their remit and also to take note of wider contextual issues including cultures, religions, and economy when studying women in society.

Vernon, I. S., & Jumper Thurman, P. (2009, Summer). Native American Women and HIV/AIDS: Building healthier communities. The American Indian Quarterly, 33(3),

“…we share general information about the health of Natives, focus on the health of Native women and their risk factors for contracting HIV/AIDS, and offer a model for change—the Community Readiness Model (CRM). We believe the CRM will build a healthy environment that can develop culturally responsive HIV/AIDS interventions and preventions for Native women and their communities.” (p. 352) 

Vyavaharkar, M. V., Moneyham, L., & Corwin, S. (2008). Health care utilization: The experiences of rural HIV-positive African American women. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 19(1), 294-306.

This qualitative study explored perceptions and experiences of HIV-positive rural African American women regarding availability, accessibility, and quality of health care and social services. Twenty-two women residing in rural areas of South Carolina were recruited to participate in one of three focus groups. A conceptual model of health services utilization was used to guide the study and served as a framework for coding data. Verbatim transcripts of group discussions were analyzed using content analysis to code and identify data categories. Data revealed common perceptions of lack of services and inferior quality of available services to meet some of their most important needs. Overall, findings provide a picture of women whom the health care/social services system fails to serve. The findings have significant implications for increasing resources and designing interventions that empower these women and enhance their quality of life. 

Webb, M. S., & Gonzalez, L. O. (2006, April). The burden of hypertension: Mental representations of African American women. Issues in Mental Health Nursing, 27(3), 249-271.

A qualitative study using focus groups to explore African American women's mental representations of hypertension was conducted with 47 participants. The ability of participants to select and perform rational procedures for threat management also was explored. Leventhal's Self-Regulation Process Model was used to guide the development of the study. African American women (mean age 50.11 years) were recruited from community settings to participate in focus groups. Transcripts from the focus groups were coded and analyzed using comparative analysis. Four themes were generated from the women's mental representations: (1) Vulnerability and Inevitability, (2) Biobehavioral Assaults, (3) Barriers to Effective Management, and (4) Culturally Relevant Remedies. Hypertension was perceived as a significant disease threat; causality was associated with risk factors interacting within the context of psychological stress. Acquiring a clear perspective of how African American women perceive hypertension and their ability to reduce risk factors can assist in developing a model for stimulating the use of health promotive behavior. 

Wilken, H. A., Valente, T. W., Murphy, S., Cody, M. J., Huang, G., & Beck, V. (2007, July). Does entertainment-education work with Latinos in the United States? Identification and the effects of a telenovela breast cancer storyline. Journal of Health Communication, 12(5), 455-469.

This article examines the proposition that a popular form of entertainment, the telenovela, can educate Spanish-speaking viewers in the United States if accurate health information is presented in a dramatic, narrative format. Health professionals consulted on a breast cancer storyline in a Spanish-language telenovela, Ladron de Corazones, and the impact on viewers' knowledge and behavioral intentions were assessed using three methods. First, an analysis of call attempts to 1-800-4-CANCER demonstrated a significant increase in calls when a PSA featuring the number aired during the program. Second, a nationwide telephone survey indicated that viewers, especially those who identify with Spanish-language television characters, gained specific knowledge from viewing the story and that male viewers were significantly more likely to recommend that women have a mammogram. Third, these trends were confirmed and further explored using focus groups of Ladron viewers. Implications for educating viewers using dramatic serials in the United States are discussed. 

Williams, P. B., Ekundayo, O., Udezulu, I., & Omishakin, A. M. (2003, April/June). An ethnically sensitive and gender-specific HIV/AIDS assessment of African American women: A comparative study of urban and rural American communities. In T. Byrd (Ed.), Women's Health [Feature issue]. Family & Community Health, 26(2), 108-123.

A prevention program that promotes attitudinal and behavioral change has been repeatedly recommended as an effective measure for community prevention and control of HIV/AIDS. Within the past decade, disease control programs among African Americans have shown no significant changes, as HIV/AIDS and related infections continue as the leading causes of death and disability in this population. It is particularly acute among African American females who, although representing only 13.9% of the United States female population, presently account for over 60% of all AIDS cases among females in the United States. The epidemic nature of the disease in this group poses the issue of African American women's rights and underscores their physical, emotional and sociocultural vulnerability to HIV/AIDS. This study used an open-ended attitude, knowledge, feelings, and behavior questionnaire (AKFBQ) survey approach to assess knowledge and various HIV/AIDS high-risk attitudinal and behavioral factors that affect the incidence, mortality, and morbidity of HIV/AIDS among women in specific urban centers and rural communities in the United States. Data analysis showed no differences in factors favoring rate of infection and level of spread of HIV/AIDS among the women in both the urban and rural communities. Although level of knowledge was higher among the urban subjects than rural ones, their beliefs, attitude/feelings, and potential for behavioral change did not differ significantly among women in the two communities. This article advocates both an ethnically sensitive and gender-specific HIV/AIDS intervention program for African American women and a more active involvement in and participation of African American leaders, parents, and faith-based communities in AIDS control efforts for African Americans. 

Wilson, M. (2001, Summer). Black women and mental health: Working towards inclusive mental health services. Feminist Review, 68(1), 34-51.

The position concerning the mental health of black and minority ethnic women in Britain is closely linked to that of their respective communities in general. Issues concerning inappropriate care and treatment; lack of access to services; and service delivery based on assumptions and stereotypes govern the way in which black women and men experience mental health care and treatment. This article discusses the specific nature of black women's position, within the wider context of black communities' experience as a whole. While the term 'black and minority ethnic communities' covers a range of differing communities, the focus here is on the experiences of women from African, African-Caribbean and Asian communities. In relation to women in these communities, reference is made to issues concerning: (1) older women; (2) women of mixed heritage; (3) women's roles as care-givers; and (4) the position of refugees and asylum seekers. The article also explores and outlines the importance of self-help strategies including, e.g. befriending and counseling and the role of religion and spirituality in enabling many black people to manage their mental distress.

Wilson, R. T., Adams-Cameron, M., Burhansstipanov, L., Roubidoux, M. A., Cobb, N., Lynch, C. F., & Edwards, B. K. (2007, August). Disparities in breast cancer treatment among American Indian, Hispanic and non-Hispanic white women enrolled in Medicare. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 18(3), 648-664.

Because racial/ethnic disparities in breast cancer survival have persisted, we investigated differences in breast cancer treatment among American Indian, Hispanic, and non-Hispanic White (NHW) women. Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results data linked to Medicare claims in New Mexico and Arizona (1987–1997) among enrollees aged 65 and older were used to identify treatment, treatment interval, and mortality risk associated with delays in care. We identified 2,031 women (67 American Indian, 333 Hispanic and 1,631 NHW women with time to treatment information. Treatment intervals from diagnosis to surgery (all stages, 18 versus 4 days, p<.001) and surgery to radiation (stages I/II, 69 versus 35 days, p<.01), were significantly greater for American Indian women than for NHW women. This disparity remained statistically significant after adjustment for age, stage, grade, year of diagnosis, poverty, and distance to care. There was no statistically significant difference in treatment among Hispanic women. Further, American Indian women without surgery within 6 months experienced a 5.6-fold higher breast cancer mortality (p<.05). The duration of time to surgery and radiation has not been previously reported for American Indian women. These results suggest older American Indian women experience significant delays in cancer treatment, resulting in greater breast cancer mortality.

Wing, A. K. (2005, Winter). Examining the correlation between disability and poverty: A comment from a critical race feminist perspective--Helping the Jones keep up! Journal of Gender, Race, and Justice, 8(3).

This commentary uses narrative story-telling to illustrate the plight of the extended family of an African-American woman with disabilities. This commentary was part of the symposium “Justice for All? Exploring Gender, Race, and Sexual Orientation within Disability Law” at the University of Iowa, College of Law in 2003.

Wong-Kim, E., & Merighi, J. R. (2007). Complementary and alternative medicine for pain management in U.S. - and foreign-born Chinese women with breast cancer. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 18(4), 118-129.

This study explores beliefs about complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) use for pain management among 15 U.S.-born and 15 foreign-born Chinese women with breast cancer. For this investigation, trilingual interviewers conducted individual, face-to-face, qualitative interviews in Cantonese, Mandarin, or English. All study participants lived in San Francisco, and the foreign-born women had resided in the U.S. for 15 years or fewer. Findings indicate that many participants consider CAM a viable method of pain management. However, concerns about affordability and quality of treatment prevent some women from using CAM on a regular basis. Many participants indicated that Western health care providers are poorly equipped to provide CAM to manage the pain resulting from breast cancer treatment. Future research should explore how access to CAM can be improved for poor and uninsured patients with cancer and how alternative approaches to pain management can be integrated more broadly in the U.S. health care system. 

Wright, M. H. (1999). Sounds like home: Growing up black and deaf in the south. Washington, DC: Gallaudet University Press.

Mary Herring Wright’s story adds an important dimension to the current literature in that it is a story by and about an African American deaf child. Her story is unique and historically significant because it provides valuable descriptive information about the faculty and staff of the North Carolina school for Black deaf and blind students at that time from the perspective of a student as well as a student teacher. In addition, this engrossing narrative contains details about the curriculum, which included a week-long Black History celebration where students learned about important Blacks such as Madame Walker, Paul Laurence Dunbar, and George Washington Carver. It also describes the physical facilities as well as the changes in those facilities over the years. In addition, the story occurs over a period of time that covers two major events in American history, the Depression and World War II.

Wright’s account is one of enduring faith, perseverance, and optimism. Her keen observations will serve as a source of inspiration for others who are challenged in their own ways by life’s obstacles.

Wright, M. H. (2005, March). Far from home: Memories of World War II and afterward. Washington, DC: Gallaudet University Press.

“She’s got no more business there than a pig has with a Bible.” That’s what her father said when Mary Herring announced that she would be moving to Washington, DC, in late 1942. Recently graduated from the North Carolina School for Black Deaf and Blind Students, Mary had been invited to the nation’s capital by a cousin to see a specialist about her hearing loss. Though nothing could be done about her deafness, Mary quickly proved her father wrong by passing the civil service examination with high marks. Far From Home: Memories of World War II and Afterward, the second installment of her autobiography, describes her life from her move to Washington to the present.

Mary soon became a valued employee for the Navy, maintaining rosters for the many servicemen in war theaters worldwide. Her remarkable gift for detail depicts Washington in meticulous layers, a sleepy Southern town force-grown into a dynamic geopolitical hub. Life as a young woman amid the capital’s Black middle class could be warm and fun, filled with visits from family and friends, and trips home to Iron Mine for tearful, joyous reunions. But the reality of the times never far off. On many an idyllic afternoon, she and her friends found somber peace in Arlington Cemetery, next to the grave of the sole Unknown Soldier at that time. During an evening spent at the U.S.O., one hearing woman asked how people like her could dance, and Mary answered, “With our feet.” She became a pen pal to several young servicemen, but did not want to know why some of them suddenly stopped writing.

Despite the close friends and good job that she had in Washington, the emotional toll caused Mary to return to her family home in Iron Mine, NC. There, she rejoined her family and resumed her country life. She married and raised four daughters, and recounts the joys and sorrows she experienced through the years, particularly the loss of her parents. Her blend of the gradual transformation of Southern rural life with momentous events such as Hurricane Hazel creates an extraordinary narrative history. The constant in Far from Home remains the steady confidence that Mary Herring Wright has in herself, making her new memoir a perfect companion to her first.

Yoshida, K. K., Li, A., & Odette, F. (1999). Cross-cultural views of disability and sexuality: Experiences of a group of ethno-racial women with physical disabilities. Sexuality and Disability, 17(4), 321-337.

The field of sexuality research as it pertains to women with physical disabilities from different ethno-cultural communities is limited. This may be due to the lack of understanding among health care providers and researchers regarding the issues related to sexuality for women with disabilities. The impact of cultural beliefs and values related to sex and sexuality can further hinder women with disabilities from expressing themselves as "sexual beings." The purpose of this paper is: 1) identify issues and barriers experienced by women with disabilities from different ethno-cultural communities within an urban setting and 2) identify commonalities in experience of women with disabilities along the lines of cultural values about disability and gender.