This is a modified version of the original paper newsletter.
Links and other information may be outdated.
The Radical Psychology Network meets next month in New York during
the American Psychological Association's annual convention. This will
be our first gathering since our founding meeting in Toronto two
years ago. We're planning two sessions, both in the Herbert Hoover
Room (!) at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel (!!) at Park Avenue and East
- Information Meeting
- Friday, August 11, 5-6:50 pm
- Business Meeting
- Sunday, August 13, 1-2:50 pm
We may also arrange additional meetings. (At least, additional dinner and hanging out meetings!)
Please attend, even if you're not going to other APA events!
RadPsyNet is doing well:
And at last month's Community Psychology conference in Chicago, 40 people came to RadPsyNet's "Critical Issues Group" to see how they might benefit from, and contribute to, a more critical perspective (see Isaac Prilleltensky's article) .
We've come a long way. But after two years of newsletters, mail, e-mail, and phone calls, it would be good to meet in person--one goal of our New York meeting. The other goal is to put the Network on a more secure footing. We have some important decisions to make, as outlined throughout this newsletter.
Especially if you can't get to New York in August, please respond with your comments as well as your suggestions for other issues we should consider. Send comments to Isaac Prilleltensky, who will take your concerns into account when organizing the agenda.
In addition to planning our search for the best pizza in New York City (a difficult job, but somebody's got to do it), we've come up with a list of issues to discuss in August, including crucial organizational issues. We can begin this discussion before the convention and continue it at the Friday Information Meeting--but we need to make decisions at the Sunday afternoon Business Meeting .
Should RadPsyNet try to clarify its identity?
For example, what does it mean to use the word "radical"? Does the word keep more people away than it attracts?
Should we come up with a tighter focus, or should we retain our identity as an umbrella for psychologists of a variety of political and theoretical perspectives?
How can we organize ourselves more effectively?
Division of Labor
Keeping RadPsyNet going requires a lot of separate tasks. In the long run, and perhaps even in the short run, we need to divide up the work, perhaps into smaller packages . The only alternative may be to eliminate the more time consuming tasks (such as this newsletter) and retain those that require less work (such as the e-mail discussion list). See below for list of tasks.
For the past year, we've asked people to pay $10 dues, and have freely granted waivers to those who need them. But if not for a few $50 $100 donations, we'd be totally broke, and you would not be reading this newsletter. We need to have a more stable dues arrangement. Unless anyone wants to give us a large grant (hint).
Should we increase dues?
Should we limit waivers to students only? Eliminate the money draining newsletter in favor of sole use of the Internet (thus no longer reaching people without computers and no longer able to hand out newsletters at conferences, in class, etc.)? Or reduce the newsletter's format to a one page listing of announcements?
How should we make decisions as an organization?
Who can speak in the name of RadPsyNet , and on what kinds of issues? When a group decision must be made, how can we use the Internet or other resources efficiently?
Organizing with Others
What connections should we pursue with organizations such as the Society for Community Research and Action (SCRA, APA's Division 27; see Isaac's article on page 5 ) and the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI, APA's Division 9)? Many RadPsyNet members belong to one or both of these groups, each of which would welcome more participation. Should we investigate a formal relationship?
Is there really a need for RadPsyNet that is not met by these or other groups? SPSSI is undergoing its own period of reassessment, apparently having lost many of its active members to newer, more focused APA divisions such Peace Psychology. Does the same fate await us?
And what about other groups, outside APA? How might we make connections with other psychology organizations? With interdisciplinary groups? With political activist groups?
Let's not forget trying to change the world!
How can RadPsyNet play a role in public affairs?
Should we make, and publicize, stands on issues? How would we determine those stands?
Do we have enough members in any one location to make a public presence feasible? Do we have enough energy?
It's been a busy year, for RadPsyNet's expansion and for me personally.
I've been encouraged by the interest expressed by psychologists around the world--and especially psychology students--in what the Radical Psychology Network is up to. With the Internet resources set up by Tor Neilands in Texas and David Nightingale in the United Kingdom, more and more people now stumble across our perspective on the state of the world and the state of psychology. Copies of RadPsyNews go fast at conferences and via mail. And letters from members and others remind me how important it is for all of us to make contact with like minded individuals confronting similar issues.
Now that RadPsyNet is almost two years old, the time has come to institutionalize some of what we've accomplished. It's crucial that other RadPsy members come forward and volunteer to take on a share of the work.
I'm not abandoning ship. But I am pretty worn out. And the other coordinators could use some help, too.
In the past year I've gotten arrested for handing out leaflets at my university, which was a pretty overwhelming and time consuming experience (see RadPsyNews #8 ). Gotten married and become a father the second time around, which is overwhelming in a more satisfying way. And gotten doctor's orders to cut down on my workload, orders I've had trouble following. At any rate, I need some time to decompress. And to get to other projects I've put off for too long as I begin the year's sabbatical I've looked forward to for a long time.
So I hope that our August meeting brings a commitment by others to take on some of the workload. Specific tasks are listed on the next page. Please look at the list and think about what you can do. And think about alternatives, such as setting up committees or becoming part of a larger organization with more resources.
I'm glad I was able to help get RadPsyNet off the ground, and I'd be glad to continue actively in a formal role. But as we begin our third year, it's time to make sure the Network doesn't fall victim to the tragedy of the commons.
By the way, that arrest situation has been resolved. Free speech rights affirmed. Charges dropped. Moving on to other issues. If you'd like to see the full public statement, contact me at the address to the left or look at my new World Wide Web home page (http://www.dennisfox.net. And thanks for your help!
See you in New York! (But first, a couple of weeks in Maine looking out at the ocean .)
[See current Help! needs]
- Answer inquiries from interested individuals
- Contact newsletter & journal editors
- Contact groups with potential members
- Prepare leaflets
- Distribute leaflets & newsletters at conferences, through mail, etc.
- Maintain accurate membership database
- Update & print membership list & mailing labels
- Remind people to send in annual dues
- Collect dues & maintain account
- Editorial Tasks
- Gather announcements of conferences, courses, etc.
- Write articles
- Edit articles for space & style
- Lay out newsletter using word processor
- Prepare mailing
- Photocopy & fold newsletters
- Insert into envelopes & mail
- Internet Preparation
- Translate formatted text to Ascii text
- Send both versions to Internet coordinator
- Email List
- Help members with subscription problems
- Keep e-mail system running smoothly
- Gopher and World Wide Web
- Maintain information on both sites
- Translate formatted newsletters and other material to html web format
- Keep up with links to other resources
- Develop new resources
Something Else to Do to Prepare for New York's High Prices
If you know of cheap or free places to stay during the convention (August 11-15), let us know!
Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues
(APA Division 9)
Annual Membership Fee
Student member: $10 per year (Full privileges)
Member: $12.00 dues for first year--then graduated dues from $12-$50
Checks should be made payable to SPSSI
SPSSI Central Office
P.O. Box 1248
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48106-1248.
The Radical Psychology Network organized a "Critical Issues Group" at the recent Fifth Biennial conference of the Society for Community Research and Action , Division 27 of the American Psychological Association. Our group, titled Radicalizing Organized Psychology, was one of nine Critical Issues Groups that SCRA scheduled to encourage more action among community psychologists. Each group met twice and then reported back to the final Town Meeting.
The conference was well organized and had a variety of interesting sessions for radical minded psychologists. Topics included oppression and racism, disabilities, unemployment, empowerment of disadvantaged groups, collaborating with grass roots organizations, and others.
As a member of Division 27, I appreciate the participatory nature of many of the sessions, and the attempt by the organizers to listen to members' new ideas and challenges.
RadPsyNet coordinators Dennis Fox and Isaac Prilleltensky facilitated the Group. RadPsy members John Lawrence (Baltimore) and Eliot Levine (College Park, MD) were tremendously helpful in leading small group discussion and planning the second session. Other Network members at the convention included Randy Potts (NY), Arvin Bhana (South Africa), and Neville Robertson (New Zealand). And other community psychologists in Chicago became members--Colleen Loomis (Tulsa), Ingrid Huygens (New Zealand), and Heather Gridley (Australia). Some of our "electronic" members from the Email discussion list were also present. It was a pleasure meeting them all.
At the first session, with about 40 participants, we elicited ideas about how to promote the agenda of social justice within psychology. At the second session, with 30 participants, we decided on priorities and created a plan of action.
There was consensus among participants that we should try to resuscitate the radical impulse within Division 27. After all, the division was created in the 60s, at a time when many psychologists saw the limitations of advancing human welfare through the traditional modes of clinical practice. The division was founded on the ideal of promoting human welfare through the creation of more humane environments.
To regenerate radical sentiments within the division, we identified four priorities:
1 Work With/In Division 27
It was suggested that we connect with other existing bodies within Division 27 to create an umbrella organization to work together on topics related to oppression and social justice. To that end, we might collaborate with the division's committee on racial and ethnic affairs, with the committee on women's issues, and with the newly formed interest group on disabilities.
Although there was some discussion about creating an interest group that would carry the "flag" of social justice, it was felt that such a group would drain resources from other groups that are pursuing worthy goals. The best strategy, we decided, was to work in concert with like minded groups.
2 Outreach Beyond Division 27
It was suggested that we might identify other bodies with similar goals within APA. It would be important to reach a critical mass of people interested in making psychology more politically active on issues of justice and oppression. Potential collaborators within APA would be SPSSI and the divisions on Women, Gay and Lesbians, Ethnic Minorities, and others.
While these groups are pursuing very worthwhile endeavors on their own, it may be that the particular agendas of these groups inhibit a more powerful combined effect of a larger and more effective agenda for social change.
3 Inform Community Psychology with Critical Interdisciplinary Perspectives
This third priority represents the need to move beyond traditional and parochial ways of thinking to incorporate insights from other disciplines and paradigms. There was talk of developing and adopting a social science paradigm with social justice as its central construct.
4 Educate and Support Students in Learning About Critical Theory
There was recognition of the fact that many undergraduate and graduate psychology students do not get exposed to the insights of critical theory until after they have been indoctrinated in narrow ways of thinking.
There was also acknowledgment of the positive function the Radical Psychology Network serves in this regard. To further advance this objective, Eliot and a group of students proposed creating and distributing to professors and students learning modules dealing with critical theory
A group of nine people, including John Lawrence, Eliot Levine, Dennis Fox and me,volunteered to follow up on these recommendations. If you'd like to help out, let me know (Isaac Prilleltensky)!
Peace Review publishes essays on ideas and research in peace studies, broadly defined.Our essays are relatively short (2500-3500 words), and are intended for a wide readership. We are most interested in the cultural and political issues surrounding conflicts between nations and peoples. Since we are a transnational journal (we distribute to more than 40 nations), we want to avoid speaking with the voice of any particular national culture or politics. Relevant topics include war, violence, human rights political economy, development, culture and consciousness, the environment, and related issues. We welcome correspondence, and will publish short letters. We also want to recommend good new books and videos, and will publish favorable short reviews--not more than 800 words each. We also publish "Peace Profiles" comprised of short biographies distinguished activists from around the world. send for detailed writer 's guidelines.
Peace & Justice Studies
University of San Francisco
2130 Fulton St.
San Francisco, CA 94117
Beginning in 1996, this new journal published by Plenum will
publish theoretical and experimental papers on the biobehavioral,
developmental, and psychosocial facets of gender and culture that
relate to health outcomes, as well as on intervention strategies.
Richard M. Eisler, Editor
Journal of Gender, Culture, and Health
Department of Psychology
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Blacksburg, VA 24061-0355
Ninth Annual Conference
"Recovering a Future"
Saturday & Sunday
18-19 November 1995
University of East London
This conference is established as the major forum in Britain for
exploring the inter-relationships between psychoanalytic theory,
politics, culture, social identity and psychotherapeutic practice. As
in previous years, the intention is that the conference should
provide the opportunity for creative exchange among
psychoanalytically oriented practitioners and theorists and others
active in thinking, writing and working in the public sphere.
19 Neville Road
London, N16 8SL.
Fourth Annual Conference
August 20, 1995
James E. Gruber,
Opposing involuntary treatment and/ or commitment, strategies for resisting funding costs, advocacy for children, advocacy for women, strategies for dealing with privatization of services
Forced Treatment "Against Our Will"
Children's and youth issues, adults' issues, women's issues,
elderly issues, family issues, systems that work without coercion,
ethical issues, systemic issues, historical perspective
Action and Advocacy
Innovative advocacy strategies (non-legal), successful
consumer/survivor involvement in PAIMI programs, personal approaches
in advocacy and activism.
More Email Lists!
Cyberspace and Society is a new research and academic list relevant to social sciences and related disciplines. It will review, disseminate and report on advances in cyberspace, virtual environments and new cultural technologies. It encourages multi-disciplinary perspectives.
To join, mail to: email@example.com
Message: join cyberspace-and-society Firstname Lastname
The Society for Community Research and Action (SCRA APA's Division 27) has several e-mail lists:
Mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Message saying: subscribe scra-l Address Name
Mail to: email@example.com
Message: subscribe slfhlp-l Firstname Lastname
Mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Message: subscribe compsy-l Firstname Lastname
The debating forum for students of psychology was founded in spring 1995 and purports to stimulate the discussion and exchange of ideas, opinions and information in general among students at various departments of psychology. The conference is administered by the server at the Prague Philosophical Faculty, Charles University.
To enroll, send e-mail with empty Subject to: email@example.com
Message: subscribe PSYCHO-L Lastname Firstname
Don't forget our own radical-psychology-network e-mail list!
Items Submitted by RadPsyNet Members
Friday August 11
RadPsyNet Information Meeting
This is where we'll meet each other, greet the curious, begin our discussion of RadPsy philosophy and issues, identify priorities for further discussion and action, & plan our New York restaurant tour!
Bring list of interesting conference sessions & other New York activities!
Saturday August 12
10-10:50 am/Isaac Prilleltensky, Discussant
"Addressing Oppression & Racism in Community Psychology Theory & Practice"
Waldorf Astoria, Basildon Room
3-3:50 pm/Henry Minton
Presidential Address, Division 26 (History)
"Deconstructing Heterosexuality: Life Stories from Gay New York, 1935 1941"
Evening Radical Fun?!?!
Sunday August 13
8-9:50 am/Jeffrey A. Schaler
"Spiritual Thinking in Addiction Treatment Providers: The Spiritual Belief Scale"
Panel: "Recent Developments in the Assessment of Spirituality & Religiousness"
New York Hilton and Towers, Madison Suite
RadPsyNet Business Meeting
Please make this meeting! We have lots to discuss
4-4:50 pm/Dennis Fox
"Can the Radical Psychology Network's Critique Make SPSSI More Resilient?"
SPSSI poster session
Sheraton Hotel, Sheraton Exhibition Center
Monday August 14
9 am-4:50 pm/Division 1 General Psychology session
"Is there a Crisis in Psychology?"
9-10:50 am/Isaac Prilleltensky
"Preventing Harm & Promoting Ethical Discourse in the Helping Professions"
Marriot Marquis Hote, Westside Ballroom North
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