FAP and Feminist Therapies: Confronting Power and Privilege in Therapy

  • Christeine Terry
  • Madelon Y. Bolling
  • Maria R. Ruiz
  • Keri Brown


The quote by McIntosh (1988) reflects a theme that weaves together this chapter on functional analytic psychotherapy (FAP) and feminist therapies. Briefly, psychotherapy is comprised of a series of social encounters fraught with sources of behavioral influence that are subtle, indirect, and generally undetectable by those involved. We will examine the characteristic sources of influence on social behavior (Biglan , 1995; Glenn, 1988; Glenn & Malagoid , 1991; Guerin , 1994; Parott , 1986; Zimmerman , 1963) and make the case that their role within the therapeutic process should be of interest to therapists.


Therapeutic Relationship Reinforcement Relation Behavior Analyst Radical Contextualist Multicultural Counseling 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Aebischer, V. (1988). Knowledge as a result of conflicting intergroup relations. In M. M. Gergen (Ed.), Feminist thought and the structure of knowledge (pp. 142–151). New York: University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Ballou, M., & Brown, L. S. (2002). Rethinking mental and health disorder: Feminist perspectives. New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  3. Banaji, M. R. (1993). The psychology of gender: A perspective on perspectives. In A. E. Beall & R. J. Sternberg (Eds.), The Psychology of gender (pp. 251–273). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  4. Baum, W. (2005). Relationships, management, and government. In Understanding behaviorism: Behavior, culture, and evolution (2nd ed., pp. 213–236). Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishing.Google Scholar
  5. Bem, S. L. (1981). Gender schema theory: A cognitive account of sex-typing. Psychological Review, 88, 354–364.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Biglan, A. (1995). Changing cultural practices: A contextualist framework for intervention research. Reno, NV: Context Press.Google Scholar
  7. Brach, C., & Fraserirector, I. (2000). Can cultural competency reduce racial and ethnic health disparities? A review and conceptual model. Medical Care Research and Review, 57, 181–217.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Brown, L. S. (1986). From alienation to connection: Feminist therapy with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Women and Therapy, 5, 13–26.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Brown, L. S. (1992). Feminists perspectives on psychopathology: Introduction. In L. S. Brown & M. Ballou (Eds.), Personality and psychopathology: Feminist reappraisals. New York: Guilford.Google Scholar
  10. Brown, L. S. (1994). Subversive dialogues: Theory in feminist therapy. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  11. Brown, K. (2009). Development of a behavior analytic treatment for depressed women: Integrating principles of feminist therapy. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI.Google Scholar
  12. Brown, L. S., & Ballou, M. (Eds.). (1992). Personality and psychopathology: Feminist reappraisals. New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  13. Brown, L. S., & Brodsky, A. M. (1992). The future of feminist therapy. Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training, 29, 51–57.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Brown, L. S., & Walker, L. E. A. (1990). Feminist therapy perspectives on self-disclosure. In G. Stricker & M. Fisher (Eds.), Self-disclosure in the therapeutic relationship (pp. 135–154). New York: Plenum Press.Google Scholar
  15. Callaghan, G. M. (2006a). Functional analytic psychotherapy and supervision. International Journal of Behavioral and Consultation Therapy, 2, 416–431.Google Scholar
  16. Callaghan, G. M. (2006b). Functional assessment of skills for interpersonal therapists: The FASIT system: For the assessment of therapist behavior for interpersonally-based interventions including Functional Analytic Psychotherapy (FAP) or FAP-enhanced treatments. The Behavior Analyst Today, 7, 399–433.Google Scholar
  17. Campbell, R., & Wasco, S. M. (2000). Feminist approaches to social science: Epistemological and methodological tenets. American Journal of Community Psychology, 28, 773–791.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Caplan, P. J. (1995). They say you’re crazy: How the world’s most powerful psychiatrists decide who’s normal. New York: Addison-Wesley.Google Scholar
  19. Eagly, A. H. (1983). Gender and social influence. American Psychologist, 38(9), pp. 971–981.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Enns, C. Z. (2004). Feminist theories and feminist psychotherapies: Origins, themes, and diversity (2nd ed.). New York: Haworth Press.Google Scholar
  21. Fee, E. (1986). Critiques of modern science: The relationship of feminism to other radical epistemologies. In R. Bleier (Ed.), Feminist approaches to science (pp. 42–56). New York: Pergamon.Google Scholar
  22. Fine, M. (1992). Disruptive voices: The possibilities of feminist research. Michigan: University of Michigan Press.Google Scholar
  23. Gilbert, L. A. (1980). Feminist therapy. In A. M. Brodsky & R. T. Hare-Mustin (Eds.), Women and psychotherapy (pp. 245–266). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  24. Glenn, S. S. (1988). Contingencies and metacontingencies: Towards a synthesis of behavior analysis and cultural materialism. The Behavior Analyst, 11, 161–180.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  25. Glenn, S. S., & Malagodi, E. F. (1991). Process and content in behavioral and cultural phenomena. Behavior and Social Issues, 1, 1–14.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Gondolf, E. W. (1998). Assessing woman battering in mental health services. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  27. Guerin, B. (1994). Analyzing social behavior: Behavior analysis and the social sciences. Reno, NV: Context Press.Google Scholar
  28. Harding, S. (1986). The science question in feminism. Ithaca: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
  29. Hayes, S. C., Barnes-Holmes, D., & Roche, B. (2001). Relational frame theory: A post-Skinnerian account of human language and cognition. New York: Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers.Google Scholar
  30. Hayes, S. C., & Brownstein, A. J. (1986). Mentalism, behavior-behavior relations, and a behavior analytic view of the purposes of science. Behavior Analyst, 9, 175–190.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  31. Hays, P. (2001). Addressing cultural complexities in practice: A framework for clinicians and counselors. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Herrmann, A. C., & Stewart, A. J. (1994). Theorizing feminism: Parallel trends in the humanities and social sciences. Boulder, CO: Westview.Google Scholar
  33. Hineline, P. (1992). A self-interpretive behavior analysis. American Psychologist, 47, 1274–1286.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Kaschak, E. (1992). Engendered lives: A new psychology of women’s experience. New York: Harper Collins.Google Scholar
  35. Keller, E. F. (1985). Reflections on gender and science. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
  36. Kirk, G., & Okazawa-Rey, M. (1998). Women’s lives: Multicultural perspectives. Mountain View, CA: Mayfield.Google Scholar
  37. Kohlenberg, R. J., Kanter, J. W., Bolling, M. Y., Parker, C., & Tsai, M. (2002). Enhancing cognitive therapy for depression with Functional Analytic Psychotherapy: Treatment guidelines and empirical findings. Cognitive and Behavioral Practice, 9(3), 213–229.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Kohlenberg, R. J., & Tsai, M. (1991). Functional analytic psychotherapy: Creating intense and curative therapeutic relationships. New York: Plenum Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Lane, K. A., Banaji, M. R., Nosek, B. A., & Greenwald, A. G. (2007). Understanding and using the Implicit Association Test: IV. What we know (so far). In B. Wittenbrink & N. S. Schwarz (Eds.), Implicit measures of attitudes: Procedures and controversies. New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  40. Marecek, J., & Hare-Mustin, R. T. (1991). A short history of the future: Feminism and clinical psychology. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 15, 521–536.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Marecek, J., & Kravetz, D. (1998). Putting politics into practice: Feminist therapy as feminist praxis. Women and Therapy, 21, 17–36.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Marini, M. M., & Fan, P. L. (1997). The gender gap in earnings at career entry. American Sociological Review, 62(4), 588–604.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. McIntosh, P. (1988). White Privilege and Male Privilege: A personal account of coming to see correspondences through work in women’s studies. White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack. Retrieved July 1, 2005, from
  44. O’Neill, J. (2003). The gender gap in wages, circa 2000. The American Economic Review, 93(2), 309–314.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Park, S. M. (2004). Feminism and therapy. In C. Negy (Ed.), Cross-cultural psychotherapy: Toward a critical understanding of diverse clients (pp. 281–300). Reno, NV: Bent Tree Press.Google Scholar
  46. Parott, L. J. (1986). On the differences between verbal and social behavior. In P. N. Chase & L. J. Parrott (Eds.), Psychological aspects of language (pp. 91–117). Springfield, IL: Charles C. Thomas.Google Scholar
  47. Rabin, C., Tsai, M., & Kohlenberg, R. J. (1996). Targeting sex-role and power issues with a functional analytic approach: Gender patterns in behavioral marital therapy. Journal of Feminist Family Therapy, 8, 1–24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Reinharz, S. (1992). Feminist methods in social research. New York: Oxford.Google Scholar
  49. Ruiz, M. R. (1995). B. F. Skinner’s radical behaviorism: Historical misconstructions and grounds for feminist reconstructions. Behavior and Social Issues, 5(2), 29–44.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Ruiz, M. R. (1998). Personal agency in feminist theory: Evicting the illusive dweller. Behavior Analyst, 21(2), 179–192.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  51. Ruiz, M. R. (2003). Inconspicuous sources of behavioral control: The case of gendered practices. The Behavior Analyst Today, 4, 12–16.Google Scholar
  52. Ruiz, M., & Terry, C. M. (2006). Enhancing behavior analytic principles with feminist principles. Paper presented at the meeting of the Association for Behavior Analysis (ABA), Atlanta, GA.Google Scholar
  53. Sidman, M., Wynne, C. K., Maguire, R. W., & Barnes, T. (1989). Functional classes and equivalence relations. Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 52, 261–274.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Skinner, B. F. (1945). The operational analysis of psychological terms. Psychological Review, 52, 270–277.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Skinner, B. F. (1953). Science and human behavior. New York: Macmillan.Google Scholar
  56. Skinner, B. F. (1969). Contingencies of reinforcement–A theoretical analysis. New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts.Google Scholar
  57. Skinner, B. F. (1974). About behaviorism. New York: Alfred A. Knopf.Google Scholar
  58. Skinner, B. F. (1978). Reflections on behaviorism and society. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.Google Scholar
  59. Steiner-Adair, C. (1986). The body politic: Normal female adolescent development and the development of eating disorders. Journal of the American Academy of Psychoanalysis, 14, 95–114.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  60. Sturdivant, S. (1980). Therapy with women: A feminist philosophy of treatment. New York: Springer.Google Scholar
  61. Sue, D. W., & Sue, D. (2002). Counseling the culturally diverse: Theory and practice. New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  62. Terry, C. M. (2005, August). FAP and the sociopolitical: Power and oppression in therapy. Paper Presented at the 1 st annual FAP Summit, Seattle, WA.Google Scholar
  63. Terry, C. M., & Bolling, M. Y. (2006, August). Sociopolitical issues and FAP: Unconscious assumptions, silenced voices. Paper presented at the 2nd annual FAP Summit, Seattle, WA.Google Scholar
  64. Terry, C. M., & Bolling, M. Y. (2007, May). Functional Analytic Psychotherapy (FAP): A context to analyze and work with issues of power and privilege. In C. M. Terry (Chair), Power and privilege: Synthesizing behavior analytic theories and feminist theories. Symposium conducted at the meeting of the Association for Behavior Analysis (ABA), San Diego, CA.Google Scholar
  65. Tsai, M., Callaghan, G. M., Kohlenberg, R. J., Follette, W. C., & Darrow, S. M. (2008). Supervision and therapist self-development. In M. Tsai, R. J. Kohlenberg, J. W. Kanter, B. Kohlenberg, W. C. Follette, & G. M. Callaghan (Eds.), A guide to Functional Analytic Psychotherapy: Awareness, courage, love and behaviorism (pp. 167–198). New York: Springer.Google Scholar
  66. Unger, R. K. (1986). Looking toward the future by looking at the past: Social activism and social history. Journal of Social Issues, 42, 215–227.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. United States General Accounting Office. (2003). Women’s earnings: Work patterns partially explain difference in men’s and women’s earnings. Retrieved February 22, 2008, from
  68. Veldhuis, C. B. (2001). The trouble with power. Women and Therapy, 23(2), pp. 37–56.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Walker, L. E. A. (1994). The abused woman and survivor therapy: A practical guide for the psychotherapist. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Worell, J., & Remer, P. (1992). Feminist perspectives in therapy – An empowerment model for women. Chichester: Wiley.Google Scholar
  71. Worell, J., & Remer, P. (2003). Feminist perspectives in therapy: Empowering diverse women (2nd ed.). New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  72. Wyche, K. F., & Rice, J. K. (1997). Feminist therapy: From dialogue to tenets. In J. Worell & N. G. Johnson (Eds.), Shaping the future of feminist psychology: Education, research, and practice (pp. 57–72). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. Zimmerman, J. (1963). Technique for sustaining behavior with conditioned reinforcement. Science, 142, 682–684.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christeine Terry
    • 1
  • Madelon Y. Bolling
    • 2
  • Maria R. Ruiz
    • 3
  • Keri Brown
    • 4
  1. 1.Palo Alto VA Healthcare SystemPalo AltoUSA
  2. 2.University of WashingtonSeattleUSA
  3. 3.Rollins CollegeWinter ParkUSA
  4. 4.University of WisconsinMilwaukeeUSA

Personalised recommendations