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Marva L. Lewis, PhD
Marva L. Lewis, PhD
Areas of Expertise:
- PhD in Sociocultural Psychology from University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado.
- MA in Sociocultural Psychology from University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado.
- BA in Psychology from Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan.
Dr. Lewis' program of research focuses on the development of culturally valid research methods and measures of racism-based stress during pregnancy, Colorism in African American families, and parental acceptance or rejection of children. Specifically her basic and applied research includes:
- Basic research on racism-based stress as an unrecognized factor in racial disparities in perinatal infant outcomes in African American women.
- Applied research using narrative therapy techniques and measures to strengthen African American family intergenerational relationships based on issues of Colorism as a legacy of the historical trauma of slavery.
- The prevention and reduction of child abuse and neglect and strengthening parent-child attachment through the use of the hair combing task, and a parent-education curriculum, Talk, Touch & Listen While Combing Hair, for use with a community-based parent support group using visualization methods and peer support, infant mental health concepts and techniques.
- The development of an evidenced-based tool for use by individuals, organizations, and groups on the topic of Diversity, Privilege and Oppression.
In 2021, Dr. Lewis was endorsed as an Infant Mental Health Mentor-Research/Faculty by the Alliance for the Advancement of Infant Mental Health.
2021-2022 - Sequential mixed-method research study on Talk, Touch and Listen While Combing Hair parent groups. The New Orleans Early Childhood Network, PI, M. L. Lewis, $120,000.
2021 - Diversity and Inclusion Training for Social Workers: An Integrated Approach - Tulane University Center for Engaged Learning and Teaching (CELT) Undergraduate Summer Research Award, $2,500. Bailey Smith, PI, M. L. Lewis Faculty Mentor
2020 - Webinar Series Talk, Touch and Listen Parent Café. Sub-Contract Award from University of South Florida. M. L. Lewis P.I. $20,000.
2016-2017 - Pilot Talk, Touch & Listen While Combing Hair: A hybrid on-line community-based parent group. $9,000. Carol Lavin-Berneck Foundation, M. Lewis & K. Theall Co-PI’s.
Lewis, M. L., Editor, D. Weatherston, Co-Ed. (December 2021) Therapeutic cultural routines to build family relationships. Talk, touch, and listen while combing hair. Springer Publishers.
Iruka, I. U., Lewis, M. L., Lozada, F. T., Bocknek, E., & Brophy-Herb, H. (2021). Call to action: Centering Blackness and disrupting systemic racism in academic publishing. Infant Mental Health Journal, 42(6). DOI: 10.1002/imhj.21950.
Harden, V., Ramos, I., Romaines, J., Lewis, M. L. (2021). Interlocking theories and practice in treatment and recovery for women with opioid use disorders. Journal of Social Work Practice in the Addictions. https://doi.org/10.1080/01634372.2021.1954398.
Lewis, M. L., & Norwood, R. G. (2019). “When I go to heaven, I’ll be White”: The ethics of transracial adoption within the context of childhood trauma and racial identity development. Zero to Three Journal, 40(1), 12-21.
Butler Byrd, N. M., Rowe-Odom, M. J., Bushfan, O. L., Gill, A., Baca, K., & Lewis, M. L. (2019). Using hair-combing interactions to enhance relationships between Black women and girls impacted by homelessness. Women and therapy. DOI: 10.1080/02703149.2019.1622912.
Lewis, M. L. (2019). The Intergenerational Transmission of Protective Parenting Responses to Historical Trauma. In (Editors) H. E. Fitzgerald, D. Johnson, D. Qin, F. Villarruel, and J. Norder. The Handbook of children and prejudice: Integrating research practice and policy, 43-61. Springer Publishers. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-12228-7.
Lewis, M. L. & Craddock, K. T. (2019). Mothering while Black: Strengths and vulnerabilities in a sociopolitical racial context of structural inequality. In, The Routledge Companion to Motherhood, 1st Edition. Edited by L. O’Brien Hallstein, A. O’Reilly, & M. V. Giles. Routledge.
Community Involvement / Board Positions
2019-present - Steering committee for the Task Force on Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health and Developmental Neuroscience for Council on Social Work Education.
2003-present - Associate Editor and Ad-hoc committee member to address systemic racism in academic publishing for the Infant Mental Health Journal.
2018-present - Associate Editor - Developmental Psychology.
2017 to 2019 - President of the Louisiana Infant Mental Health Association