Courtney E. Brown
African American Psychology
March 1, 2013
1. IN THE THOMAS PARHAM ARTICLE, DESCRIBE AFRICAN PSYCHOLOGY’S INFLUENCE ON AFRICAN AMERICAN PSYCHOLOGY.
African Psychology can be traced to Ancient Egypt known as Kemet. The people of ancient Egypt studied the human psyche or soul and the higher mental processes as a holistic environment. From their perspective, they believed that there was a continuity and harmony between nature and God. They had three levels components of being which were mental, physical, and spiritual. It was based on religion. They can be further broken down into seven important elements which we see in present day African-American Psychology. The mental and Physical levels were needed
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Any healing that took place was rooted in Ma’at which was defined as a standard of living or modeling. Ma’at was characterized by seven cardinal virtues which we can see reflected now in African American culture. They included truth, justice, righteousness, harmony, order, balance, and propriety many of the values we live by today. Ma’at was a concept that individuals could use in order to view their interactions with others and model proper behavior from. African Psychological stand point has influenced African American Psychology in a number of ways. Primarily the interconnectivity within the spirit world and the world we are physically present in. It is important to African Americans to maintain balance in both worlds in order to experience a sense of harmony. A tormented soul tortures the body thus African American’s focus on the balance of the two. Another aspect of African Psychology is the role of groups and group dynamics. Africans are communal individuals and place high regards in the ability to live harmonies amongst each other for the need to survive.
The aforementioned elements played a key role in conceptualizing today’s African American Psychology.