We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. By continuing to browse this repository, you give consent for essential cookies to be used. You can read more about our Privacy and Cookie Policy.

Durham Research Online
You are in:

Psychotherapy and social change : utilizing principles of cognitive-behavioral therapy to help develop new prejudice-reduction interventions.

Birtel, Michele D. and Crisp, Richard J. (2015) 'Psychotherapy and social change : utilizing principles of cognitive-behavioral therapy to help develop new prejudice-reduction interventions.', Frontiers in psychology., 6 . p. 1771.


We propose that key concepts from clinical psychotherapy can inform science-based initiatives aimed at building tolerance and community cohesion. Commonalities in social and clinical psychology are identified regarding (1) distorted thinking (intergroup bias and cognitive bias), (2) stress and coping (at intergroup level and intrapersonal level), and (3) anxiety (intergroup anxiety and pathological anxiety). On this basis we introduce a new cognitive-behavioral model of social change. Mental imagery is the conceptual point of synthesis, and anxiety is at the core, through which new treatment-based approaches to reducing prejudice can be developed. More generally, we argue that this integration is illustrative of broader potential for cross-disciplinary integration in the social and clinical sciences, and has the potential to open up new possibilities and opportunities for both disciplines.

Item Type:Article
Full text:(VoR) Version of Record
Available under License - Creative Commons Attribution.
Download PDF
Publisher Web site:
Publisher statement:© 2015 Birtel and Crisp. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
Date accepted:04 November 2015
Date deposited:05 September 2017
Date of first online publication:20 November 2015
Date first made open access:No date available

Save or Share this output

Look up in GoogleScholar