Onda Latina

The KUT Longhorn Radio Network Presents: Mexican American Experience Collection

Audio recordings including interviews, music, and informational programs related to the Mexican American community and their concerns in the series "The Mexican American Experience" and "A esta hora conversamos" from the Longhorn Radio Network, 1976-1982.

Nav: Home


Interview With Chicano Psychologist Gus BaróN
Program #
Culture, Identity

Social Issues
Linda Fregoso
Gus Barón
Nov 2, 1981

Interview with Chicano psychologist Gus Barón

Psychologist Gus Baron discusses the emerging field of Chicano psychology, which argues that psychologists must understand their patient’s culture in order to best treat mental health problems. Baron explains that the term Chicano psychology seeks to raise awareness among non-Chicano psychologists about the ways in which minority experiences affect behavior. He explains that all behavior is shaped by ethnic or cultural factors and psychologists need to understand their patient’s background in order to contextualize their behavior.

Host Linda Fregoso asks if the field might contribute to stereotypes of Chicanos, and Baron replies that psychologists need to be careful not to homogenize minorities, but rather must pay attention to the differences, such as regional or religious, within an ethnic group. He says that while Chicanos do not suffer from unique mental health problems, the roots of those problems are different from other patients because he believes most problems stem from discrimination. He looks at how Chicanos might internalize discrimination and how feelings of inferiority can result in drinking and drug abuse. He also examines drinking culture and machismo and explains how both affect Chicano mental health. He explains that some people think Machismo is a mental health disorder and addresses the problem of domestic abuse within the Chicano community.

He then talks about Chicano use of psychological services and explains that Chicanos are more likely to seek counseling if the provider is a member the Chicano community. Moreover, many people turn to other community members, such as priests or curanderas for help.


Center for Mexican American Studies | Department of History | The Benson Latin American Collection

DIIA | © 2009 Liberal Arts Instructional Technology Services