Martín-Baró in English?

There has been recent discussion on the openlibpsy discussion list about the possibility of

Ignacio Martín-Baró photo with guitar

Ignacio Martín-Baró

translation of more of Ignacio Martín-Baró’s works into English.  Sadly this doesn’t seem to be an immediate possibility, but we have just posted two interviews from 1985 and 1987 on the documents page. [Initially there were some problems with the 2 files but this now corrected – 9/4/2013 3.16pm BST.]  If you have any material in English by Martín-Baró then please do share it.
Why not join the discussion list and join in the discussion?



Revealed: Pentagon’s link to Iraqi torture centres | World news | The Guardian

Revealed: Pentagon’s link to Iraqi torture centres | World news | The Guardian.
Why is this relevant to   Because the torture and counter-insurgency methods developed by the USA in Vietnam and perfected in Central America were later exported to Iraq and Guantanamo.  This investigation traces some of the lineage.  For psychology there have been at least three developments from this.
1)  The Central American context of conflict, counter-insurgency, torture and impunity led to Martín-Baró’s proposals on liberation psychology, and of course his own death was the result of this terror complex.
2)  The development of work on the recovery of historical memory, social-psychotherapeutic approaches, use of testimonies,  commemoration, etc. in various locations in Latin America also has its roots in this nexus.  These ideas are also of interest in other locations such as Turkey with its own legacy of State terror.
3)  The “APA controversy” on the involvement of organised psychology and military psychologists in interrogation and torture again comes from this latest phase of the US use of organised terror.
Congratulations to the Guardian and BBC Arabic service for this investigation.

Of related interest, see this article by Victoria Brittain:  Shadow Lives
How the War on Terror in England Became a War on Women and Children


Decolonizing Psychological Science


New paper added: Liberation Psychology, a constructive critical praxis.

Mark Burton: Liberation Psychology: a constructive critical praxis.  Keynote paper given at 3rd Critical Psychology Symposium, Diyarbakir, Turkey, September, 2012.

Also accessible from our documents page.


Taking it further

I’m keen to be active Mark and look forward to your draft.



Eleventh International Congress of Liberation Social Psychology: Bogotá – Colombia, 15th to 17th November, 2012

Announcement and Call for Contributions

Eleventh International Congress of Liberation Social Psychology

Conflicts, identities and liberatory action

Bogotá – Colombia, 15th to 17th November, 2012

The International Liberation Social Psychology Congresses have now been taking place for 15 years, with the first in Mexico, 1998  Others have taken place in Mexico, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Brazil, Chile and Venezuela.  The last one, in Caracas in 2010, designated Colombia as the site of the 11th congress in 2012, an honour that we have taken up with enthusiasm and commitment.

We therefore believe that this congress must be firstly an appeal to the continuity and amplification of the ethical and political orientation put forward by Ignacio Martín-Baró en response to the need to promote transformatory dialogue and actions from the point of view of our Latin American Social Psychology.  Conversations and actions, that is, that promote critical reflection about the unequal and oppressive conditions that our peoples today suffer, and that question the role that psychology plays in the face of realities such as evictions and displacement, impunity, the invisibility of victims, social polarization, fatalism and the naturalization of violence as the only way to resolve conflicts.

We also assume that this critique of hegemonic psychology starts from the recognition of the emancipatory possibilities that emerge from the diversity of social action and resistance.  We fully identify with this committed social psychology, with the strengthening of proceses of participation and organization in diverse contexts, generating liberatory,  actions of solidarity and hope, based on the recognition of life as the foundation of survival, in territories with sovereignty of their resources and their own economic forms and in conditions in which the struggle of the people is legitimate and necessary.

The development of the proposal of liberation social psychology acquires special relevance in a country like Colombia, historically mired in a long term internal armed conflict, articulated to a grave situation of structural violence in which psychological warfare and the dirty war have reached aberrant levels.  These problems are shared by those in other places due to the most negative effects of globalization which tend to dilute and make uniform cultures and peoples through their homogenizing, commodifying and dehumanising mechanisms.

The objective of the congress is to continue with critical reflection en relation to the necessary and urgent links between psychology and the complex problematic of our people and communities, and so we intend to promote settings for the construction and exchange of learning and experience between people, organizations and communities that are developing various forms of resistance and sovereignty with a liberatory perspective.

Some of the principles upon which the 11th Liberation Social Psychology Congress is based are:  a) no marketing, so the dynamics will be of voluntary contribution and interchange in solidarity.  b) Construction and interchange of knowledge in a spirit of equality and recognition of diversity:  so that the methodology of the congress may be sustained in reflective practices that start from the analysis of contexts, recognition of potential and advances, positioning of the role of the communities, starting from the establishment of Tables of Dialogue, as nuclei of debate and construction of proposals, realization of rituals, workshops, artistic exhibitions and installations, exchanges, among others.  c) Recognition of the diversity of interests and political standpoints and the guarantee of inclusion:  for this reason we won’t be proposing thematic axes prior to receiving proposals for contributions but rather these will emerge onve we’ve received all the proposals and tables of dialogue have been established by participants.  d) Reflexive practices committed to social realities and with their leaders as protagonists, so therefore works will be realized jointly with organisations, communities and social experiences that develop emancipatory and liberatory interventions, in settings and neighbourhoods of the city.

For the congress in Colombia we expect the participation of a minimum of 250 people from the same countries that came to Caracas: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Italy, Nicaragua, Puerto Rico, Uruguay, Spain, United States, Venezuela, as well as others soch as Bolivia, Palestine, Germany and France.  We expect 250 people from Colombia.

So we make this announcement and call to people, organizations and social movements nationally and internationally, to participate actively in the process of organization and development of the 11th International Congress of Liberation Social Psychology.  Some of the currently anticipated forms of participation are:

  • Participation based on experiences or research and/or community processes.
    Deadline for abstracts: 30 September.
  • Self-convened discussion tables.  These can consist of a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 6discussants, and  will be proposed by one of the discussants who will also have the responsibility for information and coordination for the discussion.
  • Tables of discussion by invitation by the team organising the congress and/or as a result of invitation by anyone interested in promoting discussion about cotemporary social problems and their relation with the social psychology of liberation.
  • Poster presentations, artistic displays, audiovisual presentations or workshops.
  • Conversation sessions in bars and arts and cultural venues around Bogotá.


Participation in discussion tables:  30 October.

Participation as presenter:  30 September.

Expecting positive responses to the announcement and call and confident of its , we expect wide participation in the congress.  We will respond to your comments and questions, sharing a big hug in solidarity.

Contact and information:

Organizing committee for the 11th International Congress of Liberation Social Psychology.

Telephone:   (+57) (1) 2813188 / Mobiles:  3006157160 / 3002989169 / 3214453554

Web page:



(translated MB)




Community Psychology, Liberation Psychology, Ecopsychology MSC/PhD programme in California, USA

The Community Psychology, Liberation Psychology, Ecopsychology Specialization of the M.A./Ph.D. Depth Psychology at Pacifica Graduate Institute in Carpinteria, California announces needs-based scholarship assistance for the 2012-2013 academic year. Students live throughout the U.S. and other countries, traveling to campus three days nine months a year. (See

The Herman Warsh Community-Based Scholarship Fund ( warsh+scholarship) helps to support students working in the areas of education, social justice, reconciliation, ecology, and diversity, and who are from groups historically under-represented in the study and practice of depth psychology. Applicants should have experience in and commitment to working in community-based settings on environmental, community, or cultural issues. Funds awarded in 2012-2013 will be renewable through the dissertation phase. The application deadline is August 1 st, and applicants must be accepted into the specialization before this date.

From Mary Watkins.


Generating consciousness

I thought you might like to see this photo taken on the May Day march in La Paz,Bolivia.
The banner says: Urus psychology: generating consciousness.
I didn’t  get a chance to talk to them – Urus refers to one of the ethnic groups in Bolivia and possibly also to the department or city of Oruro.
The march itself was actually rather reactionary in relation to the political process in Bolivia, but the banner expresses one of the things liberation psychologists should be aiming for.


I will write something about my encounters with liberation and community psychology in 7 American countries when  I get home in mid May.
Mark Burton


Registration again

With any luck we’ve now solved the problem of rogue registrations by machines. There is a new capcha test at several points on the site – let us know if you find any difficulty using it, for example when  registering. See contact tab to contact us.



New events on the events page

Costa Rica, Washington DC, Barcelona, South Africa, Morelia (México)., Bogotá …….

go to events page