Master of Arts (MA)
Faculty of Science
Advocating for liberation from oppression through critical research and praxis has become a central concern among community psychologists. In this dissertation, I argue that while community psychology (CP) has had some success in integrating multidisciplinary knowledge, its understanding of oppression and liberation continues to be characterized by an avoidance of economic considerations. I posit the concept of structural validity as being necessary to re-focus our research and praxis on the economic structure of oppression. Within the current global context of systemic inequality, this economic structure is being ideologically driven by the doctrine and discourse of neoliberalism, which has important implications for how community psychologists should advocate for liberation. I argue that neoliberalism functions as a hegemony, a system of control based on consent and coercion that sets particular limits on the potential for community psychologists to engage in transformative interventions. In order to effectively advocate for liberation and establish spaces of counter-hegemony, a new set of values, theories and action are examined, and some programmatic recommendations are prescribed to move CP’s research and praxis towards a more radical direction.
Sandbeck, Sune, "In Search of the Political Economy of Oppression and Liberation: Towards Structural Validity for Community Psychology" (2008). Theses and Dissertations (Comprehensive). 899.