By Norma Borges
SAN JUAN – "LGBT 101", with essays written by Puerto Rican psychologists and other professionals, discusses different aspects of the Puerto Rican LGBT population´s experiences. Dr. Alfonso Martínez-Taboas, a professor at Albizu University, explained that the book (428 pages) has 19 chapters written by thirty experts in the field. He pointed out that the book was written from a multidisciplinary point of view. Besides the psychologists, he said, historians, lawyers and social workers also wrote essays on the subject.
The book has chapters on the history of the LGBT community in Puerto Rico; disclosure of the gay or lesbian identity; mental and physical health of the LBGT community; sexuality and the LGBT community; adolescence and aging in the LBGT community; homoparental families; religion and spirituality; bisexual communities; trans communities and international legislation, among others. Every chapter is documented with recent empirical and scientific studies.
" The book´s main purpose is to provide information that will help the readers have a better understanding of the LBGT community, and clear their doubts about it. Also, the intention of the authors is to help them discard myths and fallacies that circulate in the popular media, and base their opinion solely on the best evidence provided by the social sciences," explained Dr. Alfonso Martínez Taboas.
He also pointed out that it is a reference book for readers who are interested in human sexuality, social stigma and sexual minorities. He added that it is an ideal book to be discussed and read at the undergraduate and graduate level. Its principal objective, he explained, is to provide ample information so that the reader will be able to make an informed judgment.
Four psychologists who have distinguished themselves by their commitment and interest in the LGBT population were the book´s editors. Dr. Miguel Vázquez-Rivera is the current coordinator of the Puerto Rico Psychological Association´s LGBT Community Affairs Committee; Dr. Martínez-Taboas is a professor at Albizu University and was the founder of the LGBT Community Affairs Committee; Dr. Margarita Francia is Assistant Professor at Albizu University and a member of said committee, and Dr. José Toro-Alfonso has been a leader on the topic of the LGBT community in Puerto Rico.
LGBT 101 is available through the website, www.ppeditores.com