ERIC Number: ED240418
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Reciprocity of Therapist's Self-Disclosure: Effects of Therapist's Race on Black Client's Disclosures.
Wetzel, Christopher G.; Wright, Carol E.
Self-disclosure, defined as any information about oneself which one person communicates verbally to another, is an important aspect of the therapeutic process. The strongest determinant of disclosure is disclosure itself--the reciprocity effect. To explore the reciprocity effect in the context of biracial counseling, 33 black female college students participated in an analogue study consisting of an interview with a female therapist they believed was either white or black. The therapist's level of self-disclosure was also manipulated. Results showed that increasing therapist disclosure increased trustworthiness when the therapist was black; it nonsignificantly decreased the therapist's trustworthiness when the therapist was white, suggesting that the white therapist's disclosure may have been considered out of place, inappropriate, or even condescending. A second finding was that the two measures of self-disclosure, the Jourand self-report scale, and the Chelune behavioral measures, did not significantly correlate. This may reflect racial differences in how self-disclosure is defined. Given the deleterious effects uncovered concerning cross-racial disclosure, a replication field study would raise ethical problems. (JAC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Counselors; Researchers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Client Behavior; Cross Race Interaction; Reciprocity (Communication)
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (91st, Anaheim, CA, August 26-30, 1983).