The Cultural Context of Sexual Pleasure and Problems
Psychotherapy with Diverse Clients
Edited by Kathryn S. K. Hall, Cynthia A. Graham
Routledge – 2013 – 402 pages
Using rich case material and research presented by distinguished authorities in the fields of sex, couple, family, and psychotherapy, this edited book contributes to our efforts to help individuals and couples increase their sexual satisfaction. The authors explore social and cultural backgrounds, the meaning of sexual problems in specific cultural contexts, and the way in which culture presents challenges to traditional psychotherapy. More importantly, they answer the question: should therapists accept any and all behaviors, values, and attitudes that are considered normal, even if they violate the therapist’s own cultural standards? The case studies identify challenging cultural issues and provide clinicians with culturally sensitive treatment options. The book’s sections also separate chapters based on the degree to which psychological treatments are recognized and utilized for dealing with sexual problems in different countries, making it an ideal reference for professionals and students. The concluding chapter looks at culture through the lens of the provider, rather than the patient, and ties together the major themes and questions posed.
"Given its practical bent and breadth of scope, this book would be of relevance to students, professionals and curious lay readers from a range of perspectives. It would also function as a useful starting point for those interested in social and sexual relationships within any of the countries discussed. Although largely designed to be read as stand-alone essays or chapters, in its entirety it also serves to raise important questions about the role of cultural contexts in any sexual or relationship intervention."- Rosie Buckland, Feminist and Women’s Studies Association
"This important book, The Cultural Context of Sexual Pleasure and Problems: Psychotherapy With Diverse Clients, edited by Kathryn Hall and Cynthia Graham, builds a bridge between two important subdisciplines that each warrant more attention than they currently receive. Hall and Graham’s book is one of the few in the field to explicitly tackle cultural differences in sexual behavior and sexual relationships. The Cultural Context of Sexual Pleasure and Problems has much to offer." – Sherry L. Hamby, PsycCritiques
“Rather than pay academic lip service to the importance of culture in sexuality, Hall & Graham have gone directly to the source. They present us with an enlightening array of perspectives from across the world and, in so doing, shake us out of our complacent assumptions about what sex and sex therapy is or should be. This book is a unique and important contribution to a field that has for too long avoided the challenges and opportunities that an awareness of diversity delivers.” - Marta Meana, PhD, Professor of Psychology, University of Nevada, Las Vegas and President of the Society for Sex Therapy and Research
“No professional dealing with sexuality in multi-cultural communities can afford to ignore this book. This volume takes culture and sexuality out of the realm of theory and research and makes it directly relevant to the clinician.” - Irv Binik, PhD, Department of Psychology, McGill University, Montreal, Canada
“This text is unique, fascinating, beautifully written, carefully edited, and incredibly useful. It describes culturally competent approaches to interventions in human sexual concerns in countries as diverse as Iran, India, Cameron, China, the United States, and Europe. With global migration, the United States and Western Europe are becoming increasingly multicultural making this text a necessary addition to the library of all clinicians treating sexual difficulties.” - Robert Taylor Segraves, MD, PhD, Professor of Psychiatry, Emeritus, Case Western Reserve University; Editor, Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy
“At last, a book for clinicians that examines, in specifically located chapters, how sexual pleasure, sexual relationships, sex therapy, and sex life itself only exist in cultural context. The best sexology books have always taken a broad view, and Hall and Graham will now be added to that shelf.” - Leonore Tiefer, PhD, Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry, NYU School of Medicine
“Hall and Graham display the growing scope of intercultural diversity of sex therapy beyond the US-dominated approaches with a comprehensive and carefully edited collection of highly professional contributions. Superb book!” - Ulrich Clement, PhD, Director, Institute of Sex Therapy Heidelberg, Associate Professor for Medical Psychology, Medical School, University of Heidelberg, Germany
“Finally! An authoritative reference on cultural competency for sex therapists! The editors take us on a trip around the world, with case studies and thoughtful analysis that illuminate cultural considerations affecting sexuality. This book is a fascinating read, and one of vital important to sex therapists.” - Bill Taverner, MA, CSE, Editor-in-Chief, American Journal of Sexuality Education; Executive Director, The Center for Family Life Education
Hall, Graham, Introduction. Part I: Minorities: The Need for Cultural Sensitivity. Nichols, Same Sex Sexuality from a Global Perspective. Kelly, Shelton, African American Couples and Sex. Melendez, Dickenson, Sol, Guzman, Guyot, Molina, Understanding Latina Women's Sexuality in the US: Analysis of an Innovative HIV Prevention Program. Part II: Psychotherapy is not Practiced Here: Cultural Challenges. Savage, The Multi-cultural Complexity of Sexuality in Cameroon. Zargooshi, Rahmanian, Motaee, Kohzadi, Nourizad, Culturally based Sexual Problems in Traditional Sections of Kermanshah, Iran. Youn, Challenges Facing Sex Therapy in Korea. Part III: The Emerging Practice of Psychotherapy for Sexual Problems. Ramanathan, Weerakoon, Sexuality in India: Ancient Beliefs, Present Day Problems, and Future Approaches to Management. Nga, Ying, Sex, Sexual Problems, and Sexual Agency in Hong Kong Chinese Women. Temkina, Rotkirch, Haavio-Mannila, Sex Therapy in Russia: Pleasure and Gender in a New Professional Field. Part IV: Cultural Adaptations of Psychotherapy Approaches to the Treatment of Sexual Problems. Brendler, Sexual Myths and Realities in Brazil. Soares, Nobre, Sexual Problems, Cultural Beliefs, and Psychosexual Therapy in Portugal. Sungur, The role of Cultural Factors in the Course and Treatment of Sexual Problems: Failures, Pitfalls, and Successes in a Complicated Case from Turkey. Aloni, Heruti, De Paauw, Israeli Sexuality at the Intersection of Tradition and Modernism. van Lunsen, Brauer, Laan, Sex, Pleasure, and Dyspareunia in Liberal Northern Europe: How Sexual Pleasure is Seen as the Most Important Goal of all Non-Reproductive Sexual Activity in a Post-Modern Northern European Society, but is Denied by Women and Scientists who are still under the Influence of Male Dominated Sexual Scripts. Part V: The Other Side of the Couch: The Cultural Contribution of the Therapist. Giami, The Social and Professional Diversity of Sexology and Sex Therapy in Europe.
Kathryn S.K. Hall, PhD, is a licensed psychologist with a private practice in Princeton, New Jersey, where she specializes in the treatment of sexual disorders.
Cynthia A. Graham, PhD, is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Psychology at the University of Southampton, England, and a research fellow at The Kinsey Institute for Resarch in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction at Indiana University. She is also Editor-in-Chief of The Journal of Sex Research.