The Society for the
Study of Social Issues

9/11 and Psychology SPSSI News Summary

12 September 2011

The process of grieving
Writing in the Christian Science Monitor, Courtney Martin, cites findings by SPSSI member, Leeat Granek,  and colleagues, “that only 7 percent of the 8,000 people surveyed said that they felt skillfully supported by friends, family, and colleagues as they grieved,” and that there is a profound need for better education on how to cope well with the grief that many people felt in the aftermath of 9/11.

Religion, spirituality and trauma
The Jewish newspaper, Forward, describes the research of a number of SPSSI members including Roxane Cohen Silver and Kenneth Pargament on the way that religious belief factored-in to coping strategies of people that witnessed the 9/11 attacks. Studies showed that “religious and spiritual Americans reported better physical and emotional health in the three years after the September 11 attacks.”

9/11 and global consciousness
An article by Patrick Kiger in the National Geographic Daily News discusses the merits of research on Global Consciousness, particularly the controversial work of member Daryl Bem.

Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
The work of SPSSI member, Roxane Cohen Silver, on Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and the special issue of American Psychologist were reported in a wide range of media news outlets including the Huffington Post, the New York Times, and France 24. Commentary ranged over many studies relating to the causes and treatment of PTSD particularly how social support networks played an important role and how resilient individuals ultimately proved to be.

Children’s experience and learning of 9/11
Scientific American looks at a myriad of ways that are being debated in child development theory on how to teach kids about what happened on 9/11. It has hinged particularly on the way that children understand events reported in the media and in history. The work of Cohen Silver is discussed.

Routledge's top picks of the work of SPSSI members:

  • Emotions, attributions, and policy endorsement in response to the September 11th terrorist attacks
  • Melody S. Sadler, Megan Lineberger, Joshua Correll and Bernadette Park
  • After 9/11 at Ground Zero: The anxiety-buffering effects of worldview support on the first anniversary of 9/11
  • Chandra Y. Osborn, Blair T. Johnson and Jeffrey D. Fisher
  • Conservative shift among high-exposure survivors of the September 11th terrorist attacks
  • George A. Bonanno and John T. Jost
  • From national trauma to moralizing nation
  • Ronnie Janoff-Bulman and Sana Sheikh

Alex Ingrams
SPSSI Policy Coordinator

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Research that produces nothing but books will not suffice.
                                                                                                                    - Kurt Lewin