Objective: Cultural competence has been critiqued as a flawed principle, focussed on mastery of cultural knowledge rather than critical reflection on race and privilege. Cultural humility is proposed as an alternative, emphasising accountability over mastery, involving critical self-reflection of personal biases and culture. This study aims to explore the development of cultural humility in psychological practice amongst nine clinicians, each of whom identify with journeys towards decolonial practice.
Method: Interpretative narrative inquiries were conducted with nine therapists and personal/professional storylines were interpreted with the support of Friere’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed (1970) and Cresswell, Karimova & Brock’s Pedagogy of the Privileged (2013).
Results: Narrative inquiry revealed a spectrum of storylines which differed depending on the experience of dominant or non-dominant identities or an intersection between both. Five major processes contributing to cultural humility: (1) early childhood influences, (2) critical reflection, (3) contact, (4) cultural consultation, and (5) culturally responsive practices were found.
Conclusions: Further research is required on the personal/professional development of therapists’ decolonial identities, including the exploration of how these processes can be taught in clinical psychology training curriculum.