Sociopolitical Diversity in Psychology: The Case for Pluralism
Redding, Richard E. Sociopolitical diversity in psychology: The case for pluralism. American Psychologist, Vol 56(3), Mar 2001, 205-215.
11 Pages Posted: 9 Jan 2014 Last revised: 23 Nov 2020
Date Written: March 1, 2001
Psychology celebrates diversity, recognizes the value and legitimacy of diverse beliefs, and strives to be inclusive. Yet, the profession lacks sociopolitical diversity. Most psychologists are politically liberal, and conservatives are vastly underrepresented in the profession. Moreover, when sociopolitical views guide the research, advocacy, or professional practice of psychologists, those views most often are liberal. The lack of political diversity in psychology has unintended negative consequences for research, policy advocacy, clinical practice, the design and implementation of social interventions, and professional education. It excludes or marginalizes conservatives and conservative views, having detrimental effects on the profession in each of these areas. This article examines the importance of political diversity and the negative consequences of its absence and provides strategies for increasing sociopolitical pluralism in psychology.
Keywords: sociopolitical diversity, pluralism, psychology, multiculturalism, diversity, psychologists, public policy, clinical practice, higher education
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