American Psychiatry and Homosexuality: An Oral History

American Psychiatry and Homosexuality: An Oral History

by Jack Drescher
     
 

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Through the personal accounts of those who were there, American Psychiatry and Homosexuality: An Oral History examines the 1973 decision by the American Psychiatric Association (APA) to remove homosexuality from its diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (DSM). This unique book includes candid, one-on-one interviews with key mental health professionals… See more details below

Overview

Through the personal accounts of those who were there, American Psychiatry and Homosexuality: An Oral History examines the 1973 decision by the American Psychiatric Association (APA) to remove homosexuality from its diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (DSM). This unique book includes candid, one-on-one interviews with key mental health professionals who played a role in the APA's decision, those who helped organize gay, lesbian, and bisexual psychiatrists after the decision, and others who have made significant contributions in this area within the mental health field.

Editorial Reviews

Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Patricia E. Murphy, PhD (Rush University Medical Center)
Description: Each chapter of this book is an interview with one of the key figures who has been implemental in removing homosexuality as a diagnostic category from the DSM or who has contributed to the growing integration of gay and lesbian practitioners in the American Psychiatric Association and to literature on gay and lesbian concerns. This collection was originally published in the Journal of Gay & Lesbian Psychotherapy from 2001 to 2006.
Purpose: The goal is to provide a human face to the history of the transformation of the American Psychiatric Association, often at great personal risk.
Audience: Anyone interested in the topic, whether or not a clinician, will find the book interesting and readable.
Features: The cover has a striking picture of John Fryer, MD, wearing a mask to disguise his identity when he agreed to be a psychiatrist on a panel addressing homosexuality in 1972. The interviews show the true faces of those who have contributed to this arena through biographical content and comments.
Assessment: Readers interested in the field will find this book easy to read a bit at a time. They will find some chapters rich in presenting the personality and experiences of major figures. They will find some chapters a little shallow, leaving them with a desire to know more. There is a place for such a book that shows the human side to the challenges to, and changes in, psychiatry which, prior to 1973, included homosexuality as a psychiatric disorder.
Reviewer: Patricia E. Murphy, PhD (Rush University Medical Center)
Description: Each chapter of this book is an interview with one of the key figures who has been implemental in removing homosexuality as a diagnostic category from the DSM or who has contributed to the growing integration of gay and lesbian practitioners in the American Psychiatric Association and to literature on gay and lesbian concerns. This collection was originally published in the Journal of Gay & Lesbian Psychotherapy from 2001 to 2006.
Purpose: The goal is to provide a human face to the history of the transformation of the American Psychiatric Association, often at great personal risk.
Audience: Anyone interested in the topic, whether or not a clinician, will find the book interesting and readable.
Features: The cover has a striking picture of John Fryer, MD, wearing a mask to disguise his identity when he agreed to be a psychiatrist on a panel addressing homosexuality in 1972. The interviews show the true faces of those who have contributed to this arena through biographical content and comments.
Assessment: Readers interested in the field will find this book easy to read a bit at a time. They will find some chapters rich in presenting the personality and experiences of major figures. They will find some chapters a little shallow, leaving them with a desire to know more. There is a place for such a book that shows the human side to the challenges to, and changes in, psychiatry which, prior to 1973, included homosexuality as a psychiatric disorder.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781136859939
Publisher:
Taylor & Francis
Publication date:
10/12/2012
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
326
File size:
2 MB

What People are saying about this

Nancy McWilliams
In these RIVETING interviews with participants in the earliest and most personally costly battles to depathologize homosexuality, we hear the brave, honest voices of those who challenged established psychiatric presumptions that in retrospect can only be called—ironically enough—perverse. These first-person, intimate, back-story accounts should be read not only by mental health professionals but also by anyone interested in sexual minorities, cultural transitions, and social justice. In these narratives, all the mindless cruelties of a time when sexual diversity was equated with mental illness are evoked with stunning power, and yet so are all the courageous acts that showed up those cruelties for what they were. I COULDN'T PUT THIS BOOK DOWN. (Nancy McWilliams, PhD; President, Division of Psychoanalysis, American Psychological Association; Graduate School of Applied & Professional Psychology, Rutgers University)
K. Lynne Moritz
Collects MOVING AND VIVID PROFILES of the lives of the psychiatrists who played key roles in the revolution that has occurred in the way the mental health professions view homosexuality and gay and lesbian professionals. These portraits chronicle the lives and contributions of 17 men and women, their deep struggles within organized psychiatry and psychoanalysis, and the fire, courage and conviction that were required to change these cultures. . . .ESSENTIAL READING FOR ALL WHO WISH TO UNDERSTAND THE LIVES OF GAYS AND LESBIANS in the years before and after 1973, when homosexuality was removed from the diagnostic codes as psychiatric pathology—indeed, for all who wish to understand what it takes to change the world. (K. Lynne Moritz, MD, President, American Psychoanalytic Association)
Steven S. Sharfstein
American psychiatry has a shameful history in the labeling of homosexuality as a mental disorder until its removal from the diagnostic manual in 1973. This book recounts with first person interviews the heroic actions of psychiatric and nonpsychiatric leaders that led to that historic removal. By uniting science with human rights, these leaders initiated a revolution that continues to this day. Their personal stories recount the major milestones in the gay rights movement from pathology to normalization, from criminalization to acceptance from stigma to pride. Psychiatry has become a more humane and authentic profession as a result of these changes. . . . A MUST READ FOR ALL THE MENTAL HEALTH PROFESSIONS AND OTHERS WHO ARE COMMITTED TO THE STRUGGLE FOR GAY AND LESBIAN CIVIL RIGHTS. (Steven S. Sharfstein, MD, President and CEO of Sheppard Pratt Health System and Immediate past President of the American Psychiatric Association)

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