Article ID: CBB000932567

“Where the Need is Greatest”: Social Psychiatry and Race-Blind Universalism in Harlem's Lafargue Clinic, 1946--1958 (2009)


Between 1946 and 1958, Harlem was home to a small psychiatric facility, the Lafargue Clinic. An interracial institution run entirely by volunteers, the clinic helped expand mental health care into underserved African American communities. Relying upon extant case files, this article examines how the Lafargue staff handled clinical situations with African Americans. In its attempt to forge a new antiracist approach, the staff struck a balance between viewing Harlem patients as psychological products of their unique social context (social psychiatry) and applying modern psychiatric principles to African Americans without adjusting for racial or sociological difference (race-blind universalism).

Citation URI

Similar Citations

Book Gabriel N. Mendes; (2015)
Under the Strain of Color: Harlem's Lafargue Clinic and the Promise of an Antiracist Psychiatry (/isis/citation/CBB251110528/) unapi

Book Dennis A. Doyle; (2016)
Psychiatry and Racial Liberalism in Harlem, 1936-1968 (/isis/citation/CBB833751424/) unapi

Book Jonathan Metzl; (2009)
The Protest Psychosis: How Schizophrenia Became a Black Disease (/isis/citation/CBB957843057/) unapi

Book Kaplan, Mary; (2005)
Solomon Carter Fuller: Where My Caravan Has Rested (/isis/citation/CBB000610118/) unapi

Book Susan M. Reverby; (2000)
Tuskegee's Truths: Rethinking the Tuskegee Syphilis Study (/isis/citation/CBB442304232/) unapi

Article Baker, Robert B.; Washington, Harriet A.; Olakanmi, Ololade; Savitt, Todd L.; Jacobs, Elizabeth A.; Hoover, Eddie; Wynia, Matthew K.; (2008)
African American Physicians and Organized Medicine, 1846--1968: Origins of a Racial Divide (/isis/citation/CBB001032031/) unapi

Article Baker, Robert B.; Washington, Harriet A.; Olakanmi, Ololade; Savitt, Todd L.; Jacobs, Elizabeth A.; Hoover, Eddie; Wynia, Matthew K.; (2009)
Creating a Segregated Medical Profession: African American Physicians and Organized Medicine, 1846--1910 (/isis/citation/CBB001032032/) unapi

Book Farber, Paul Lawrence; (2011)
Mixing Races: From Scientific Racism to Modern Evolutionary Ideas (/isis/citation/CBB001033410/) unapi

Book McBride, David; (2002)
Missions for Science: U. S. Technology and Medicine in America's African World (/isis/citation/CBB000301936/) unapi

Article Wangui Muigai; (2019)
"Something Wasn't Clean": Black Midwifery, Birth, and Postwar Medical Education in All My Babies (/isis/citation/CBB729992204/) unapi

Book Johnson, Lenworth N.; Daniels, O. C. Bobby; (2002)
Breaking the Color Line in Medicine: African Americans in Ophthalmology (/isis/citation/CBB000301576/) unapi

Book Wailoo, Keith; (2011)
How Cancer Crossed the Color Line (/isis/citation/CBB001231902/) unapi

Article Crenner, Christopher; (2012)
The Tuskegee Syphilis Study and the Scientific Concept of Racial Nervous Resistance (/isis/citation/CBB001250116/) unapi

Authors & Contributors
Summers, Martin
Baker, Robert B.
Olakanmi, Ololade
Jacobs, Elizabeth A.
Wynia, Matthew K.
Washington, Harriet A.
Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences
Bulletin of the History of Medicine
American Quarterly
Journal of the American Medical Association
Journal of the National Medical Association
Endeavour: Review of the Progress of Science
Rutgers University Press
University Press of America
Johns Hopkins University Press
Oxford University Press
Cornell University Press
African Americans
African Americans and science
Medicine and race
Mental disorders and diseases
Science and race
Wertham, Fredric
Fuller, Solomon Carter
Bishop, Shelton Hale
Wright, Richard
Time Periods
20th century
19th century
20th century, late
20th century, early
United States
New York City (New York, U.S.)
Georgia (U.S.)
Alabama (U.S.)
Southern states (U.S.)
Lafargue Mental Hygiene Clinic

Be the first to comment!

{{ comment.created_by.username }} on {{ comment.created_on | date:'medium' }}

Log in or register to comment