The portrayal of homosexuality in abnormal psychology and sociology of deviance textbooks

Rose Weitz, Karl Bryant

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study examines the portrayal of homosexuality in abnormal psychology and sociology of deviance textbooks published in the United States and in print in 1995; publication dates for these books ranged between 1980 and 1995. A total of 27 textbooks—16 in psychology and 11 in sociology—were used. Books published during the 1980s were compared with those published in the 1990s. Results from textbooks in print in 1995 were compared with results from an earlier study of textbooks in print in 1980. As was found in the earlier study, three models of homosexuals and homosexuality appear in these books—homosexuality as illness, homosexuality as sin, and homosexuals as a minority group. However, striking changes have occurred in the relative importance of these models over the past 15 years. None of the textbooks currently in print explicitly describes homosexuality as an illness, compared with 30% in 1980, although many implicitly do so. The model of homosexuality as sin, meanwhile, has gained new life with the emergence of the AIDS epidemic. Finally, the minority group model is gaining strength, in both sociology and psychology textbooks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)27-46
Number of pages20
JournalDeviant Behavior
Volume18
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Law

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