Pennsylvania Society for Clinical Social Work Clinical Book Discussion Program Presents Robin DiAngelo’s White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard For White People to  Talk about Racism

Pennsylvania Society for Clinical Social Work Clinical Book Discussion Program
Robin DiAngelo’s White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard For White People to 

Talk about Racism


Book Title: White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard For White People to Talk about Racism by Robin DiAngelo
Clinical Title: Knowing Ourselves: The Effects of Racism on Our Clients’ Lives and Our Own.
Presenters: Scott Cohen, LCSW and Kathleen Kaib, LCSW
Date: August 30th, 2020
Time: 11:30am-2:30pm | 3 CEUs
Place: Zoom Online Meeting: Link will be sent after registration.

About the Book:   In White Fragility Robin DiAngelo deftly articulates the need for white people to understand and discuss racism. Her book, White Fragility, comes at a time when the topic of racism is making its way into dinner conversations, political debates, social media posts and newspaper headlines. Most of these discussions are premised on the widely held belief that racism is perpetuated by individual people in individual situations who manifest bigotry toward a person of color.  DiAngelo explains how this definition of racism is narrow and flat-out wrong.  Her book lays out how racism is the bedrock of American society and how all white Americans are holding it in place.

The term ‘white fragility’ was coined by DiAngelo in her 2011 article of the same name, published in The International Journal of Critical Pedagogy. White fragility refers to the intense emotions, the defensive stance, and the arguments that ensue when white people are confronted with the topic of racism. DiAngelo gives many examples of white fragility, both from her own experiences to those that she has observed at the macro level of American society as a whole. As an example of white fragility at the national level, DiAngelo cites the Black Lives Matter movement being twisted into ‘All Lives Matter’ by white people who feel their privilege threatened. This book can help readers recognize white fragility where it lives and through this awareness begin to confront interpersonal and structural aspects of white supremacy.

Clinical Objectives: By reading this book and participating in the discussion, attendees will:


  • Define and explore the implications of white fragility.
  • Practice techniques designed to engender curiosity and humility when discussing race and racism.
  • Strategize how as clinicians we can interrupt systemic racism through self-awareness and open dialogue.
  • Explain why it is not appropriate to expect people of color to teach white people about racial injustice.
  • Identify how guilt obstructs making change and how the sense of helplessness keeps the existing racist system in place.
  • Challenge the belief that racism does not apply to people who identify as white regardless of their social attitudes and political leanings.


About the Presenters:
Scott Cohen, MSW, LCSW, practices psychotherapy with the Crozer Keystone Health System, Department of Psychiatry.  Scott has been trained in psychodynamic, existential-humanistic, and cognitive-behavioral approaches.  Currently he works with a diverse clientele of families, couples, children and adults.  Scott also works with families of children traumatized by sexual abuse, exploitation and trafficking.  He has a special interest in the ways that history and sociopolitical events impact the therapeutic encounter.

Kathleen Kaib earned her MSS and MLSP from Bryn Mawr College Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research. For the past 17 years Kathleen worked with people on death row and their families. She worked as a mitigation specialist where she counseled inmates and created a narrative of their life to present to the court for sentencing phase relief. This entailed investigating and uncovering childhood trauma as well as the struggles they had in adulthood. Kathleen worked to help clients and their families find their strengths despite their adversities. She left that position in February of 2020 and started working at CHOP as a bereavement therapist where she provides counseling for parents who experienced the death of their child.

This event is open to PSCSW members only.

Participants who attend this program must be present for its entirety in order to get continuing education credits.

Cost: No charge for PSCSW Members to attend. There is a $10 fee for anyone wishing a CE certificate.

Cancellation Policy: There is a $5 non-refundable administrative fee for any cancellation upto 48 hours prior to this program. No refund will be issued if less than 48 hours’ notice is given for this program.


approved for credits for professional workshops sponsored by the Pennsylvania Society for Clinical Social Work, a state affiliate of the Clinical Social Work Association listed in Section

47.36 of Title 49, Chapter 47 of the PA Code, State Board of Social Work Examiners. This program is also approved for 3 credits for professional workshops for marriage & family therapists (Section 48.36) and professional counselors (Section 49.36).

FOR NEW JERSEY SOCIAL WORKERS: This program is approved for 3 clinical or social and cultural competence credits. Attendance at programs or courses given at state and national social work association conferences, where the criteria for membership is an academic degree in social work, are a valid source of continuing education credit (N.J.A.C. 13:44G-6.4(c)4).

PSCSW Members - Before you begin any registration, you must log in to the website to pay the member rate. If you register without logging in, you will pay at the nonmember rate. If you need assistance logging in, please contact the PSCSW office at:

  • August 30, 2020
    10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Details Price Qty
The Members CE Included ($10.00 (USD)) is available to members only. On Sale
The Member No CE is available to members only. On Sale