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SPSSI and Peace-Building: A Participant's Perspective


Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Paul Kimmel, Psychology and Humanistic Studies, Saybrook University, 747 Front St. 3rd Floor, San Francisco, CA 94111-1920 [].


A culture of peace promotes caring relations among individuals and groups based on full realization of their positive interdependence with each other and their environment—it entails social justice, norms of equity and multicultural sensitivity and social relations conducive to nonviolence, sustainable development, and human well-being. This is a history ofSociety for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI)'s efforts to build such a culture in the United States, especially within and through organized psychology. The perspective taken is primarily my own as a member ofSPSSICouncil, anSPSSIRepresentative to the American Psychological Association (APA)'s Council of Representatives,SPSSI's first historian and first Public Policy Fellow at the APA, liaison between Division 9 and Division 48 of the APA, andSPSSI's Representative to the Southern California Regional Council of Organizations. I argue for the importance of applying public interest science to issues of cultural, structural, and direct violence.