1st Edition

Ex-Gay Research
Analyzing the Spitzer Study and Its Relation to Science, Religion, Politics, and Culture

ISBN 9781560235576
Published March 22, 2006 by Routledge
374 Pages

USD $46.95

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Book Description

Defenders and critics of the controversial Spitzer study analyze its methodologies and findings

In 2001, Robert L. Spitzer, MD, presented his study on sexual conversion therapy with its controversial findings that some homosexuals can change their sexual orientation. The resulting media sensation and political firestorm enraged the study’s critics and emboldened its supporters. Ex-Gay Research: Analyzing the Spitzer Study and Its Relation to Science, Religion, Politics, and Culture presents leading experts examining Spitzer’s research methodology and findings to discern whether the study itself deserves deeper consideration or outright dismissal. Every facet of the study is reviewed to discuss the positive or negative aspects of the results, its significance in political and social terms, and the implications for the future.

Dr. Spitzer himself was an instrumental figure in the American Psychiatric Association's decision in 1973 to remove homosexuality as a mental illness listing from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual-III. His later study that states that in some individuals, homosexuality may be more fluid than previously thought stirred controversy in the psychiatric community and society at large. His study is presented here to allow the reader to evaluate and consider it for themselves. Leading experts then voice their own pro or con views on the methodology and findings. Ex-Gay Research: Analyzing the Spitzer Study and Its Relation to Science, Religion, Politics, and Culture fearlessly illustrates the sometimes fuzzy boundary between science and politics, courageously spotlighting the culture wars now dividing our society.

Ex-Gay Research: Analyzing the Spitzer Study and Its Relation to Science, Religion, Politics, and Culture discusses:

  • the ex-gay movement
  • the nature of scientific inquiry
  • the relationship between science and politics
  • the results of sexual conversion therapies
  • gay and lesbian rights

Ex-Gay Research: Analyzing the Spitzer Study and Its Relation to Science, Religion, Politics, and Culture is essential reading for sex researchers, mental health professionals, pastoral counselors, political activists, and any person asking if one can truly “change” his or her homosexuality.

Table of Contents

  • About the Editors
  • Contributors
  • Preface
  • Section I: Editors’ Introductions
  • 1. The Politics and Science of “Reparative Therapy” (Kenneth J. Zucker)
  • 2. Gold or Lead? Introductory Remarks on Conversions (Jack Drescher)
  • Section II: Perspectives on Changing Sexual Orientation
  • 3. Position Statement on Therapies Focused on Attempts to Change Sexual Orientation (Reparative or Conversion Therapies) (Commission on Psychotherapy by Psychiatrists [COPP] and American Psychiatric Association)
  • 4. Can Some Gay Men and Lesbians Change Their Sexual Orientation? 200 Participants Reporting a Change from Homosexual to Heterosexual Orientation (Robert L. Spitzer)
  • Section III: Commentaries on the Spitzer Study and Dr. Spitzer’s Response from Archives of Sexual Behavior
  • 5. Can Sexual Orientation Change? A Long-Running Saga (John Bancroft)
  • 6. Understanding the Self-Reports of Reparative Therapy “Successes” (A. Lee Beckstead)
  • 7. The Malleability of Homosexuality: A Debate Long Overdue (A. Dean Byrd)
  • 8. A Methodological Critique of Spitzer’s Research on Reparative Therapy (Helena M. Carlson)
  • 9. Are Converts to Be Believed? Assessing Sexual Orientation “Conversions” (Kenneth M. Cohen and Ritch C. Savin-Williams)
  • 10. Reconsidering “Sexual Desire” in the Context of Reparative Therapy (Lisa M. Diamond)
  • 11. The Spitzer Study and the Culture Wars (Jack Drescher)
  • 12. Sexual Orientation Change: A Study of Atypical Cases (Richard C. Friedman)
  • 13. The Politics of Sexual Choices (John H. Gagnon)
  • 14. Too Flawed: Don’t Publish (Lawrence Hartmann)
  • 15. Evaluating Interventions to Alter Sexual Orientation: Methodological and Ethical Considerations (Gregory M. Herek)
  • 16. Guttman Scalability Confirms the Effectiveness of Reparative Therapy (Scott L. Hershberger)
  • 17. Methodological Limitations Do Not Justify the Claim That Same-Sex Attraction Changed Through “Reparative Therapy” (Craig A. Hill and Jeannie D. DiClementi)
  • 18. Initiating Treatment Evaluations (Donald F. Klein)
  • 19. A Positive View of Spitzer’s Research and an Argument for Further Research (Richard B. Krueger)
  • 20. Penile Plethysomography and Change in Sexual Orientation (Nathaniel McConaghy)
  • 21. Finally, Recognition of a Long-Neglected Population (Joseph Nicolosi)
  • 22. Sexual Orientation Change and Informed Consent in Reparative Therapy (Bruce Rind)
  • 23. Reparative Science and Social Responsibility: The Concept of a Malleable Core As Theoretical Challenge and Psychological Comfort (Paula C. Rodríguez Rust)
  • 24. A Candle in the Wind: Spitzer’s Study of Reparative Therapy (Donald S. Strassberg)
  • 25. Spitzer’s Oversight: Ethical-Philosophical Underpinnings of “Reparative Therapy” (Marcus C. Tye)
  • 26. Sexual Diversity and Change Along a Continuum of Bisexual Desire (Paul L. Vasey and Drew Rendall)
  • 27. Science and the Nuremberg Code: A Question of Ethics and Harm (Milton L. Wainberg,
    Donald Bux, Alex Carballo-Dieguez, Gary W. Dowsett, Terry Dugan, Marshall Forstein, Karl Goodkin, Joyce Hunter, Thomas Irwin, Paulo Mattos, Karen McKinnon, Ann O’Leary, Jeffrey Parsons, and Edward Stein)
  • 28. Sexual Reorientation Therapy: Is It Ever Ethical? Can It Ever Change Sexual Orientation? (Jerome C. Wakefield)
  • 29. Heterosexual Identities, Sexual Reorientation Therapies, and Science (Roger L. Worthington)
  • 30. How Spitzer’s Study Gives a Voice to the Disenfranchised Within a Minority Group (Mark A. Yarhouse)
  • 31. Study Results Should Not Be Dismissed and Justify Further Research on the Efficacy of Sexual Reorientation Therapy (Robert L

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