Even in today's society, gay men, lesbians, and bisexuals experience multiple pressures and constraints related to their lifestyles, in addition to the stresses of everyday life. This dual tension can result in psychopathology among gay men, lesbians, and bisexuals. Preventing Heterosexism and Homophobia examines the gay and lesbian experience in light of their tension and points toward a future free of heterosexism. The stress of “coming out,” the uncertainty of parenting their children, and the difficulties facing ethnic minority lesbians and bisexuals cannot be adequately addressed without confronting the heterosexual bias in society. The contributors to this informative volume propose methods geared toward eliminating heterosexual bias in various settings–health care, therapy, communities, corporate America, and education. Ultimately, this book examines both the risks and joys of being gay, lesbian, and bisexual, and how to prevent heterosexism and its effects on the lives of all people, including those of heterosexuals. Students and professionals in interpersonal communication and interpersonal relations, clinical psychology, and public health will benefit greatly from the original perspectives this book has to offer.
Chapter 1: Speaking of Oppression: Psychology, Politics, and the Language of Power
Speaking of Oppression: Psychology, Politics, and the Language of Power
The North American psychoanalyst Charles Socarides was recently in Britain as the invited guest speaker for a prominent psychoanalytic organization, the Association for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy in the National Health Service. His view is that homosexuals are sick, compulsively driven by their unnatural urges into abnormal forms of sexual behavior. He has said that homosexuality is “a revision of the basic code and concept of life and biology” and in 1994 he described the 1973 decision by the American Psychiatric Association to remove homosexuality per se from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) as “an encouragement to aberrancy.” He continues to recommend conversion therapies ...