Conversations about controversial topics can be difficult, painful, and emotionally charged. This user-friendly guide will help you engage in effective, compassionate discussions with family, friends, colleagues, and even strangers about race, immigration, gender, marriage equality, sexism, marginalization, and more.
We talk every day—and we often do it without thinking. But, as you well know, there are some things that are harder to talk about—especially issues pertaining to politics, culture, lifestyle, and diversity. If you’ve ever struggled in a conversation about a “controversial” topic with a loved one, work colleague, or even a stranger, you know exactly how uncomfortable and heated the discussion can become. And even if you are one of the lucky few that expresses themselves eloquently, how do you move beyond mere “lip service” and turn words into actionable change?
This groundbreaking book will show you how to get to that important next level in difficult conversations, to talk in an authentic and straightforward way about culture and diversity, and to speak from the heart with tools from the head. Using a simple eight-step approach, you’ll learn communication strategies that are supported by research and have been practiced in classrooms, work meetings, therapy sessions, and more.
We constantly hear about friends and colleagues whose family members are not speaking to each other because of different political opinions, who’ve exchanged words that have mutually offended one another. If silence is one end of the continuum and verbal conflict anchors the other, how do we reach a middle ground? How do we take part in the “in between” spaces where both parties can speak and listen?
With this book as your guide, you’ll learn to navigate these difficult conversations, and take what you’ve learned beyond the conversation and out into the world—whether it’s through politics, social justice movements, or simply expanding the minds of those around you.
About the Authors:
Anatasia S. Kim, PhD, is tenured associate professor at The Wright Institute in Berkeley, CA. She received her BA in psychology from UC Berkeley, and her PhD in clinical psychology from UCLA. She is a National Ronald McNair Scholar and the recipient of number of awards, including an American Psychological Association Minority Fellowship, Okura Mental Health Fellowship, and APAGS Guardian of Psychology Award. In addition to teaching, she has a private practice in Berkeley, CA, specializing in treating adolescents/young adults with anxiety disorders, depression, and neurocognitive deficits using cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). In recent years, she served as president of the Alameda County Psychological Association, chair of the California Psychological Association Immigration Task Force, and diversity delegate of the California Psychological Association. She has presented and published in the areas of cultural competence and training, pipeline for historically underrepresented students, immigration,advocacy and leadership, and women of color in academia.
Alicia del Prado, PhD, is tenured associate professor in the clinical psychology doctoral program at The Wright Institute in Berkeley, CA. del Prado is also a licensed counseling psychologist and has a private practice in Danville, CA. She has published numerous journal articles and chapters on cross-cultural psychology, personality, acculturation, and ethnic identity, including the first enculturation scale for Filipino Americans. Due to her expertise in these areas, del Prado also provides consultation and trainings on multicultural issues to companies and colleges. del Prado is chair and co-founder of the Asian American Psychology Association’s (AAPA) Division on Asian Americans with Multiple Heritages, former co-chair of the Asian American Psychology Association’s Division on Filipino Americans, and past chair of the Women’s Issues Committee for the National Council of Schools and Programs in Professional Psychology. In 2017, del Prado was awarded two leadership awards:the Alameda County Psychological Association’s Janet Hurwich Award and the AAPA Okura Community Leadership Award.