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Dr Deanne Bell

Senior Lecturer


Dr Deanne Bell is a BPS Chartered Psychologist and Fellow of the Higher Education academy. She has experience working in varied clinical, private and community settings internationally. 

    Deanne joined UEL Psychology in 2017 as a Senior Lecturer having been an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Antioch College in America since 2013. She completed the MSc coursework in Health & Human Performance, the Exercise and Performance Psychology option at the University of Montana followed by a Masters in Counsellor Education, also at the University of Montana. She did her PhD in Depth Psychology with a specialism in Community Psychology, Liberation Psychology and Ecopsychology at Pacifica Graduate Institute.

    Deanne has worked in a variety of clinical settings and with communities on aspects of collective trauma and witnessing. Her participatory research focuses on the effects of coloniality on social relations. She continues to interrogate how middle class bystanders to others’ suffering remain indifferent through denied racism and classism. She is also exploring how communities experience state violence and the possibilities they see for transforming social injustice.

    Ultimately, Deanne is concerned with the liberation of being. This has led to her engagement in social transformation practices which include using critical pedagogical strategies in the classroom and forms of participatory action research with communities. She is working on a reggae opera as a piece of socially conscious art that could potentially catalyze social consciousness about bystanding and indifference. She is also a co-producer/director of a documentary titled Four Days in May and a multimedia arts installation titled Bearing Witness: Four Days in West Kingston - two platforms for inner city community members to tell their stories about a human rights atrocity in Kingston, Jamaica in 2010. She is a founding member of Jamaicans for Justice and, while in America, was a member of Psychologists for Social Responsibility.


    Deanne’ research portfolio has evolved through engagement with psychosocial suffering in the (post)colonial world. She is interested in understanding how communities experience collective trauma and in the possibilities they see for transforming social injustice, thereby creating community well being. Her work seeks to co-articulate marginalized experience that illuminates harmful psychosocial dynamics, which are themselves sites for transformation. She is also interested in using aesthetic means to disseminate knowledge and as a form of social engagement.

    As a critical community psychologist Deanne engages in participatory research in order to advance understandings of the suffering people experience as a result of social inequalities. She seeks to contribute to social policy development that facilitates social justice.

    Deanne’s research Interests include:

    Collective trauma
    Psychosocial suffering
    Colonially produced subjectivity
    Participatory research
    Social transformation
    Liberatory arts



    An Open Letter to Bob Marley: Time to Create Reggae Dialogues. Obsidian: Literature & Arts in the African Diaspora.

    Bell, D.. 2016. 107-110.

    Bearing Black

    Bell, D. 2013. Journal for Social Action in Counselling and Psychology Vol 5(1). 122-125.

    'Community Psychology's Gaze' in Seedat, Mohamed and Suffla, Shahnaaz and Christie, Daniel J (eds.)

    Bell, D.. 2017. Peace Psychology Book Series. 119-132.

    Retrieving Psychosocial Signs of Structural Violence in Postcolonial Jamaica. Community Psychology in Global Perspective. Vol 1(2)

    Bell, D.. 2016. 126-144.

    A Raison D'être for Making a Reggae Opera as a Pedagogical Tool for Psychic Emancipation in (Post)Colonial Jamaica

    Bell, D.. 2015. International Journal of Inclusive Education.

    'Social Justice, Diversity and Leadership' in European Journal of Counselling Psychology

    Tribe, Rachel and Bell, Deanne. 2017. Press. 6(1).

    'Transnational Perspectives on Black Subjectivity' in South African Journal of Psychology

    Stevens, Garth and Bell, Deanne and Sonn, Christopher C. and Canham, Hugo and Clennon, Ornette. 2017. Press.


    Collective trauma research - Tivoli Stories. Antioch College Faculty Fund, University of Pennsylvania and Penn Museum. US$44,000. 2014 – 2016.

    Great Lakes Colleges Association Teagle Foundation funded Consortial Center for Teaching and Learning Campus Liaison Grant. US$3,000. 2016.

    Great Lakes Colleges Association Expanding Collaboration Initiative, funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Environmental Dashboard Implementation in Multiple GLCA Colleges to Foster Collaboration across Campuses grant. US$1,800. 2015.

    PAC 45 Foundation, Manchester, UK. Consultation on collective trauma. July, 2016.




    MSc in Clinical and Community Psychology

    BSc in Clinical and Community Psychology