Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: June 25, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963978 | Print ISBN: 9781412909280 | Online ISBN: 9781412963978| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Carlos P. Zalaquett
Healthy paranoia is a healthy, normative, and adaptive response to racism perceived by Black Americans. The term was first used by Grier and Cobbs to describe the inclination they observed among Blacks to mistrust Caucasians in the areas of education, business, law, work, interpersonal relations, politics, and counseling. They suggested that cultural mistrust, in a mild form, was healthy and adaptive and fostered the development of healthy paranoia. This cultural response style, based on experiences of racism or oppression, helped Blacks to function effectively in a predominantly European American society. For example, concerns about being unfairly treated or judged may lead some Black Americans to exercise caution or ...