Tag Archives: sexuality

CfP: 50 Years Since Stonewall, The Science and Politics of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity

American Psychologist invites submissions for a special issue on psychology’s contributions to understanding sexual orientation and gender diversity through research, policy, and activism.

Important Dates
  • Submission Deadline for 2-Page Letter of Intent: November 20, 2018
  • Full-Length Manuscript Submission Invitations Sent: December 20, 2018
  • Submission Deadline for Complete Manuscripts: March 20, 2019
Special Issue Aims

The goal of this special issue is to stimulate scholarly reflection on how psychology — through both research and policy influence — has been entangled with changing social and scientific attitudes and theories about sexual orientation and gender diversity over the past 50 years.

The history of psychology and the history of recent LGBTI activism have only recently begun to be co-narrated.

This aim of this issue is to analyze and explore the co-constitutive relationships between psychological research on gender diversity and sexual orientation and the society in which this research has been, and is, embedded, both in the United States and other national contexts.

Broad questions of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • How has the “science of sexual orientation” changed and been drawn upon in tandem with efforts to combat homophobia and cultural heterosexism?
  • How have efforts to develop LGBTQ-affirmative psychologies developed in national contexts outside the United States and transnationally?
  • How has psychological science been used to influence mental health policy, legal rulings, and social attitudes about same-sex marriage, gay parenting, trans-rights?
  • How has psychology’s engagement with sexual orientation and gender diversity intersected with its engagement with other movements for equality and social justice?

All manuscripts should explicitly discuss psychology’s contributions to our understanding of the issues being investigated, and should address the importance of the historical, social, political, intellectual, and/or institutional contexts in which these contributions have developed.

The journal has “an outstanding reputation as a primary means by which the contributions of psychologists are communicated to psychologists, to other professionals, and to the public” (Kazak, 2016, p. 1).

Manuscript Submission

Submission deadline for a 2-page letter of intent for the special issue is November 20, 2018.

The letter of intent should include author names and affiliations, manuscript title, and an abstract that outlines the proposed submission.

Abstracts should clearly convey how the proposed manuscript will address the goals of the special issue.

Alexandra Rutherford, PhD, Associate Editor, and Peter Hegarty, PhD, will serve as Guest Editors of the Special Issue, with Anne E. Kazak, PhD, as advisory editor.

Letters of intent and any questions should be sent to Alexandra Rutherford.

Manuscripts must be prepared according to the manuscript submission information available on the American Psychologist homepage and submitted electronically through the journal’s manuscript submission portal.

Surveilling the Mind and Body: Medicalising and De-medicalising Homosexuality in 1970s New Zealand

The April 2018 issue of Medical History includes a piece, by James E. Bennett and Chris Brickell, on “Surveilling the Mind and Body: Medicalising and De-medicalising Homosexuality in 1970s New Zealand” that may interest AHP readers. Abstract:

‘Medicalisation’ of same sex relations is a phenomenon that reached its peak in the 1950s and 1960s. The rise of gay liberation produced a divisive political contest with the psychiatric profession and adherents of the orthodox ‘medical model’ in the United States and – to a lesser extent – in the United Kingdom. This socio-historical process occurred throughout the English-speaking world, but much less is known about its dynamics in smaller countries such as New Zealand where the historiography on this issue is very sparse. The methodology situates New Zealand within a transnational framework to explore the circulation of medical theories and the critical responses they were met with. The article is anchored around three key local moments in the 1970s to consider the changing terrain on which ideas about homosexuality and psychiatry were constantly rearranged during this decade. This power struggle took a number of twists and turns, and the drive toward medicalisation alternated with a new impetus to de-medicalise same-sex sexuality.

“The Great Cat Mutilation: Sex, Social Movements and the Utilitarian Calculus in 1970s New York City”

Department of Animal Behavior -American Museum of Natural History, ca 1987: Gary Greenberg, Kathy Hood, Leo Vroman, Jay Rosenblatt, Tineke Vroman, Peter Gold, John Gianutsos, EthelTobach, with Lester Aronson at his desk.

Forthcoming in BJHS Themes, the new offshoot publication of the British Journal of the History of Science, is an article by Michael Pettit in which he describes the animal liberation movement’s focus on psychologist Lester Aronson’s experiments with cats at the American Museum of Natural History in the 1970s:

“The great cat mutilation: sex, social movements and the utilitarian calculus in 1970s New York City,” by Michael Pettit. The abstract reads,

In 1976, the animal liberation movement made experiments conducted on cats at the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) one of its earliest successful targets. Although the scientific consensus was that Aronson was not particularly cruel or abusive, the AMNH was selected due to the visibility of the institution, the pet-like status of the animals, and the seeming perversity of studying non-human sexuality. I contextualize the controversy in terms of the changing meaning of utilitarian ethics in justifying animal experimentation. The redefinition of ‘surgeries’ as ‘mutilations’ reflected an encounter between the behavioural sciences and social movements. One of the aims of the late 1960s civil rights movements was to heighten Americans’ sensitivity to differing experiences of suffering. The AMNH protesters drew inspiration from a revived utilitarian ethics of universal organismic pain across the lines of species. This episode was also emblematic of the emergence of an anti-statist, neo-liberal ethos in science. Invoking the rhetoric of the 1970s tax revolt, animal liberationists attacked Aronson’s ability to conduct basic research with no immediate biomedical application. Without denying the violence involved, an exclusive focus on reading the experiments through the lens of utilitarianism obscures what ethics animated Aronson’s research.

New HoP: The Careers of Mowrer, Odum, & Puel, Digital History, & More

The February 2017 issue of History of Psychology is now online. Articles in this issue explore the work of O. Hobart Mowrer, Howard W. Odum, and Timothée Puel, respectively, Karl Menninger’s The Crime of Punishment, and  the changing relationship between psychology and philosophy through a digital analysis of journal content. In the news and notes section Chetan Sinha discusses the indigenization of psychology in India. Full titles, authors, and abstracts follow below.

“Preserving guilt in the “age of psychology”: The curious career of O. Hobart Mowrer,” by Corbin Page. The abstract reads,

O. Hobart Mowrer had one of the most productive and curious careers of any psychologist in the 20th century, despite struggling with severe mental illness and anxiety about his sexuality. Early in his career, he was one of the country’s leading experimental psychologists. During the mid-1940s, he became interested in religion and argued that anxiety was caused by repressed guilt that came from real wrongdoing. By the late 1950s, he had abandoned mainstream psychology, arguing that religion had been corrupted by its embrace of psychology and psychiatry. He claimed that sin was responsible for nearly all psychological problems and that ethical living and confession of wrongdoing could prevent mental illness. During his religious period, Mowrer received an astonishing amount of fawning press attention and was embraced by a public desirous of a path to mental health that did not require jettisoning traditional conceptions of sin, guilt, and human nature. This article examines Mowrer’s life and career and situates him among other mid-century skeptics of psychology and psychiatry. Other historians have argued that by the 1950s, the conflict between religion and psychiatry/psychology in the United States had largely abated, with both sides adapting to each other. Mowrer’s life and the reception of his work demonstrate that this narrative is overly simplistic; widespread conservative and religious distrust of psychology persisted even into the 1960s.

“Psychological keys in the study of African American religious folk songs in the early work of Howard W. Odum (1884–1954),” by Marcos José Bernal-Marcos, Jorge Castro-Tejerina, and José Carlos Loredo-Narciandi. The abstract reads, Continue reading New HoP: The Careers of Mowrer, Odum, & Puel, Digital History, & More

The Monitor on research directions @ The Kinsey Institute

2015-10-kinsey_tcm7-192230The latest edition of Monitor on Psychology includes a short piece by Rebecca Clay about the history and current status of psychological work at The Kinsey Institute, offering those in the field an opportunity to touch base with the work that is being done there.

Info from Drucker’s 2014 volume is used to establish how the institute’s inception and early work relates to, and differs from, its recent research directions and expansion of focus to include work on relationships as well as sexuality. Their research programs on condom usage, sex and immunity, and the impact of technology on communication in sexual relations are featured.

Read the article, with more details about the relevant researchers and administration of the institute, here.