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Found Inspiration – bell hooks

Found Inspiration is a series inspired by a prompt at the start of our meetings where we invite therapists to share an unconventional not explicitly therapy-related influence on their clinical practice. We’ve found that when your experiences aren’t reflected in academic settings and literature, and when you expand your understanding of mental health care beyond a medical model to one of healing, meaning-making and connection, you have to build your own canon.

Like many of us at MCM Collaborative, Jenny Kwon, a Graduate Clinical Intern, has found her clinical practice inspired by bell hooks. Jenny writes, “bell hooks was an author, feminist, educator, and cultural critic known for her writings on race, gender, intersectionality, and love. Her writing has guided my journey of critically thinking about experiences of marginalization and what it means to be an anti-oppressive practitioner. In addition to the brilliance of her works, the honest and passionate way in which she lived fills me with courage to do the same. Her commitment to authenticity, imagination, and community inspires me to think creatively about how we can lead lives with more fulfillment and connection.

bell hooks’ thoughts on collective healing and the importance of community are foundational to my practice. Recently, I have been reflecting on her statement that “Beloved community is formed not by the eradication of difference but by its affirmation, by each of us claiming the identities and cultural legacies that shape who we are and how we live in the world.” Grounded in this idea of intersectionality, I welcome the wholeness of each person, the complexities and multitudes of their lived experiences.”