RT - A Journal of Radical Therapy, December 1974, vol. 4, no. 5


RT - A Journal of Radical Therapy, December 1974, vol. 4, no. 5


Mental Health


RT - A Journal of Radical Therapy, was a radical, “alternate journal” of mental health that emerged initially in the early 1970s in Minot, North Dakota in the context of the New Left. It published 12 issues between 1970 and 1972 and "voiced pointed criticisms of psychiatrists during this period. The journal, originally titled, The Radical Therapist and then Rough Times, was run by a group of psychiatrists and activists who believed that mental illness was best treated by social change, not behavioral modification. Their motto was "Therapy means social, political and personal change, not adjustment.” In the 1969 manifesto that launched the journal, organizers wrote:

Why have we begun another journal? No other publication meets the need we feel exists: to unite all people concerned with the radical analysis of therapy in this society. It is time we grouped together and made common cause. We need to exchange experience and ideas, and join others working toward change. The other “professional” journals are essentially establishment organs which back the status quo on most controversial issues… We need a new forum for our views.

In the midst of a society tormented by war, racism, and social turmoil, therapy goes on with business as usual. In fact, therapists often look suspiciously at social change and label as ‘disturbed’ those who press towards it.

Therapy today has become a commodity, a means of social control. We reject such an approach to people`s distress. We reject the pleasant careers with which the system rewards its adherents. The social system must change, and we will be workers toward such change.

Those involved with this movement sought to offer and alternative to “Establishment” therapeutic approaches. Like many movements of this period, over time, ideological splits divided participants and led to numerous changes in the effort and the journal.

This issue focuses on women and includes articles about anger; Midwives in Santa Cruz, feminist therapy; feminine hygiene; women and violence; rape; compassion, altruism and “man-hating”; women as healers; heterosexual politics; lesbianism; obesity; motherhood; body image; poetry; and reviews.


The Radical Therapist, Inc.


Roz Payne


Center for Digital Research in the Humanities, University of Nebraska-Lincoln


December 1974





The Radical Therapist, Inc., “RT - A Journal of Radical Therapy, December 1974, vol. 4, no. 5,” Roz Payne Sixties Archive, accessed June 18, 2024, https://rozsixties.unl.edu/items/show/868.

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