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Behav. Sci. 2015, 5(4), 565-575; doi:10.3390/bs5040565

Out of DSM: Depathologizing Homosexuality

440 West 24 Street, #1A, New York, NY 10011, USA
Department of Psychiatry, New York Medical College, 20 Hospital Rd, Valhalla, New York, NY 10595, USA
Postdoctoral Progam in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis, New York University, 547 La Guardia Place, New York, NY 10012, USA
William A. White Institute, 20 West 74th Street, New York, NY 10023, USA
Academic Editors: Carol North and Alina Suris
Received: 26 October 2015 / Revised: 27 November 2015 / Accepted: 1 December 2015 / Published: 4 December 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Psychiatric Diagnosis Past, Present and Future)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [427 KB, uploaded 7 December 2015]


In 1973, the American Psychiatric Association (APA) removed the diagnosis of “homosexuality” from the second edition of its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM). This resulted after comparing competing theories, those that pathologized homosexuality and those that viewed it as normal. In an effort to explain how that decision came about, this paper reviews some historical scientific theories and arguments that first led to the placement of homosexuality in DSM-I and DSM-II as well as alternative theories that eventually led to its removal from DSM III and subsequent editions of the manual. The paper concludes with a discussion of the sociocultural aftermath of that 1973 decision. View Full-Text
Keywords: American Psychiatric Association (APA); diagnosis; Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM); gender beliefs; gender binaries; homosexuality; psychiatry American Psychiatric Association (APA); diagnosis; Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM); gender beliefs; gender binaries; homosexuality; psychiatry
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Drescher, J. Out of DSM: Depathologizing Homosexuality. Behav. Sci. 2015, 5, 565-575.

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