Liberation Psychology

Liberation psychology’s main concepts include: “concientizacion”, a social orientation, preferential option for the oppressed majorities, “realismo-critico”, de-ideologized reality, and methodological eclecticism.

Concientizacion was introduced by Paulo Freire (hyperlink), it refers to the intrinsic connection with the sociopolitical structure. The awareness of this interconnection may help individuals feel empowered to act on their respective circumstances. As a social orientation, it points out the insufficiency of traditional psychology as it does not address the influences of politics, history, and culture. The preferential option for oppressed minorities is evidenced by its view that psychology should be “from” the ill-treated and not “for” them.

Furthermore, the idea of “realismo-critico” posits that the problems are the ones which should generate their respective theories and not the other way around. De-ideologized reality is achieved by having a transparent understanding of social reality; this is achieved when the minorities are encouraged to endorse their own ideologies. Lastly, methodological eclecticism combines traditional data gathering techniques with novel methods such as photography, textual analyses, and drama.

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