Date of Award

Spring 5-22-2021

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Dr. Ara Parker


This paper focuses on the experience of being a Latina expressive arts therapist working in the United States of America (USA). Through literature review and a personal art-based research process, the definitions of identities, therapeutic relationships, and microaggression are discussed and explored. This paper is theoretically grounded in the notion of expressive arts therapy and gestalt therapy as a means to understand the author’s experiences in the field of counseling. Autoethnography and art-based inquiry are used to conceptualize microaggressions within the therapeutic relationship.

With the intent of increasing awareness about the author’s identities, the expressive arts were used to make sense of her experiences in relationships with clients and the world. This paper explores alternative ways to find a voice in the face of microaggressions and to share the experiences of other minority-identified therapists so as to analyze their shared realities and rediscover balance. The considerations for practice that are explored can be adapted by and applicable to minority-identified therapists in the process of building self-awareness. The arts can play an important role in empowering, naming, and expressing identities and realities in a unique way that correlates with social justice and a multicultural therapeutic approach to these is encouraged in this thesis.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.




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