Essay by madittaUniversity, Bachelor'sB, October 2008

download word file, 9 pages 0.0

Introduction'To be a woman is to be a lesser version of man. To be 'of color' is to be a lesser version of being 'white'. To be a homosexual is to be a lesser version of heterosexual' (Hall,2003, p.13).

Homosexuality, sexual orientation towards people of the same sex, appears virtually in all social contexts--within different community settings, socioeconomic levels, ethnic and religious groups. The word homosexuality first appeared in a German pamphlet in 1869, since that time attitudes toward homosexual behavior have varied with time and place. In ancient Greece, homosexual relations were acceptable and, in some cases, expected activity in certain segments of society. The word entered the English language two decades later. Around 1900, psychiatry viewed homosexuality as a mental illness. By the 1940's homosexuality was still discussed as an aspect of psychopathic, paranoid, and schizoid personality disorders. (Fox, Prilleltensky, 1997, p. 204-205). Unlike earlier studies which focused on homosexuals who had sought medical or psychological help, recent critical psychology describes homosexuals outside of clinical settings.

The aim of the essay is to provide more diverse, challenging and critical ways of describing gay and lesbian psychology with comparison to the traditional mainstream psychology. I will discuss (for and against) about three mainstream approaches on Gay and Lesbian Psychology; homosexuality as not normal aspect of human diversity, homosexuality as a life style choice rather than an innate orientation and approach that gay and lesbian people are immoral.

Mainstream Approaches on Gay and Lesbian Psychology1 Homosexuality is not normal aspect of human diversity.

'Lesbian and gay psychology was born out of reaction against a traditional mainstream psychology which defined homosexuality as sickness' (Fox, Prilleltensky, 1997, p.210), homosexuals as a' form of pathology' (Fox, Prilleltensky, 1997, p.202, ) and not normal aspect of human diversity.

'According to psychoanalysis Elizabeth Moberly, lesbians...