Asian American Women’s Feminism: Sociopolitical History and Clinical Considerations

Lisa A. Suzuki, Muninder K. Ahluwalia and Anjali Alimchandani

in The Oxford Handbook of Feminist Multicultural Counseling Psychology

Published in print September 2012 | ISBN: 9780199744220
Published online November 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

Asian American Women’s Feminism: Sociopolitical History and Clinical Considerations


This chapter provides a multicultural counseling psychology perspective highlighting theory and research that conceptualizes the experiences of Asian American women, a group characterized by diverse histories and social locations within the United States. A historical and political context is provided, beginning with the examination of federal legislation that has impacted the immigration patterns of Asian American women for over a century. Controversies surrounding a pan-Asian identity and intersectionality theory are illustrated, along with stereotypical portrayals of Asian women in the media. Asian conceptions of psychology and mental health are outlined, along with clinical considerations from a cultural perspective. Mental health concerns in the Asian American community are identified. The formation of social networks of Asian American women is discussed, as well as their impact on the women’s movement within this community. In addition, this chapter cites the unique characterization of feminism within the interdependent and often bicultural community of Asian American women.

Keywords: Asian American women; feminism; history; stereotypes; oppression

Article.  11267 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Counselling Psychology

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