A Phenomenological Study on Navigating Oppressive Intersecting Identities of Black Women

Whitney N Wyatt, Tennessee State University


Oppression from racism, sexism, and classism can make life difficult for anyone. The dominant majority of society, however, does not have to contend with all three simultaneously. Black women have intersecting identities that cause them to have to contend with the intersection of race, sex, and class on a daily basis. The purpose of this study was to describe the experiences that Black women have with the oppression of intersectionality and how this impacts their mental health. Black Feminism and Intersectionality are the theoretical frameworks from which this study was derived. Five focus groups were conducted to collect qualitative data from twelve Black adult women who described their experiences of racism, sexism, and classism and how navigating these roles impacted their psychological well-being. A thematic analysis was used to identify the five main themes of Stereotypes, Discrimination, Health, Internalized Oppression, and Coping Strategies. The results of this study yielded several implications for clinical practice, and social justice. Implications for future research are also discussed.

Subject Area

Counseling Psychology|Clinical psychology|Experimental psychology

Recommended Citation

Whitney N Wyatt, "A Phenomenological Study on Navigating Oppressive Intersecting Identities of Black Women" (2023). ETD Collection for Tennessee State University. Paper AAI30527256.