Document Type

Research Paper

Publication Date



For Black women, the issue of stereotype has been a factor affecting use of medical care and support, especially for mental illness. Black women with mental illness may not be treating their mental issues, but instead masking them. Historical medical experimentation, distrust of medical institutions, the trope of the “strong Black woman,” which operate uniquely to Black communities, stresses the need for culturally inclusive mental healthcare. This research also has implications for mental health initiatives and public policy imperatives in other communities of color. This project explores the history of medical experimentation on African Americans, the resulting distrust of medical institutions, and the stereotypes of Black women that may affect cultural views of mental illness.