Lawyering While Black: Perceived Stress as a Mediator of Impostor Feelings, Race-Related Stress and Mental Health Among Black Attorneys
Attorneys suffer from high rates of stress and mental health problems, and Black attorneys, who make up only five percent of all attorneys in the United States, are especially vulnerable due to underrepresentation and experiences of bias. The present study examined perceived stress as a mediator of the impostor phenomenon, race-related stress, and mental health among a sample of 142 Black attorneys (114 women, 25 men). Gender, age, impostor phenomenon, race-related stress, and perceived stress accounted for 51% and 57% of the variance in depression and anxiety, respectively. Perceived stress fully mediated the links between the impostor phenomenon and depression, cultural racism and depression, and impostor feelings and anxiety and partially mediated the link between cultural racism and anxiety. Results suggest that perceived stress is an important mechanism for understanding why the impostor phenomenon and race-related stress negatively impact the mental health of Black attorneys.
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Journal of Black Psychology. – 2022. – Vol. 48, № 2. – P. 206–232.
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