“Love Thyself” Black Women, Mental Health, and Radical Joy in Troubled Times

May 4, 2021
4:30 pm - 6:00 pm

Black women’s mental health: Interdisciplinary approaches and future directions.

The past year has exacerbated the realities of what Black women contend with in troubled times and all times. With the convergence of a global health pandemic that disproportionately affects Black people, continued and heightened calls for racial justice, and systemic economic inequities, Black women find themselves contending with mounting intersecting pressures and traumas in their professional and personal lives that affect their mental health. Yet, a tension exists. As Black women’s mental health needs get either overlooked or misread as deviance, Black women remain at the forefront of caring for others, advancing progressive politics, and developing creative solutions to what ails their families and communities.

This panel discussion will address how Black women’s mental health is (and has been) conceptualized and the duality of self-care as they contend with racism and sexism while simultaneously seeking and experiencing radical joy. This panel offers insights from psychologists, historians, sociologists, and legal scholars.


  • Kisha Holden, Professor and Director, Research and Scholarship, Pouissaint-Satcher Endowed Chair in Mental Health, Morehouse School of Medicine
  • Lynette Jackson, Associate Professor, Gender and Women’s Studies and African American Studies, University of Illinois Chicago
  • Zakiya Luna, Associate Professor of Sociology at University of California, Santa Barbara (affiliated with Feminist Studies)

Register for this event here.

Co-sponsored by the Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity & Equity and the Washington University Department of African & African American Studies.