Psychosocial Aspects of Chronic Illness and Disability among African Americans

By Faye Z. Belgrave | Go to book overview

9
Conclusions and Directions for Future Work

This book was written to fill a need for more relevant information on African Americans with chronic illnesses and disabilities. Despite the high prevalence of disability in the African American community, relatively little has been written. One purpose in writing this book was simply to increase awareness about disability and chronic illness and the status of African Americans with disabilities and chronic illness. The aim was to make salient how disability and chronic illness affect most African Americans in this country. A second purpose was to provide an examination of research (albeit limited) on factors that promote both adaptive and maladaptive functioning and adjustment. As discussed throughout this book, poor adjustment and outcomes are not inevitable, and many African Americans with disabilities and chronic illnesses function quite well. Certain psychological, social, environmental, and cultural factors contribute to adjustment and have been explicated throughout the book.

A third purpose was to discuss the influence of culture in the African American disability and chronic illness experience. Limited research has addressed the unique culture of African Americans, and even less discusses the impact of culture on the experience of disability and chronic illness. Africentric values provide the framework for discussing the culture of African Americans in this book.

Finally, but perhaps most importantly, the book attempts to provide

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