An Intersectionality for Theoretical Psychology?

  • Kathleen L. SlaneyEmail author
Part of the Palgrave Studies in the Theory and History of Psychology book series (PSTHP)


Theoretical psychology encompasses numerous topics and scholarly traditions and forms of scholarship, including (but not limited to) narrative and hermeneutic methods, positioning theory, historical ontology, historiometry, conceptual and discourse analysis, philosophical hermeneutics, philosophical anthropology, phenomenology, empirical philosophy, critical studies, feminist studies, social action theory, science and technology studies, and various lenses through which inquiries of specific psychological categories of experience may be viewed (e.g., contemporary psychoanalysis, Aristotelian ethics, existentialism). As a result, not only can it be difficult to know where theoretical psychology “fits” within the larger discipline, it is not always clear how the different topics and scholarly traditions within theoretical psychology interact and inform one another to form a coherent subdiscipline. Add to this the fact that theoretical psychology, like the larger discipline of psychology, is constantly being recreated as specific issues come into and go out of focus and new methods of inquiry become available, and it is indeed quite a challenge for theoretical psychologists to identify the boundaries of their subdiscipline. Furthermore, it is not altogether clear whether and how different inquires and modes of inquiry can be brought together under a unified agenda, or of whether, in fact, such an agenda is useful, or even desirable. In my contribution to this volume, I borrow the concept of intersectionality from critical race and feminist theory to explore ideas concerning how theoretical psychology might be re-envisioned, re-thought, and re-invigorated in light of the multiplicity of interdependent (?) concerns and approaches adopted by theoretical psychologists.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Simon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada

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