Stephen Soldz, Ph.D., Cert.Psya., Director, M.A. Program in Social Justice and Human Rights
Cert.Psya., Boston Center for Modern Psychoanalytic Studies, 1988.
Ph.D., Boston University, 1986.
M.Ed., Lesley College, 1978.
Stephen Soldz is Professor at the Boston Graduate School of Psychoanalysis where he directs the Social Justice and Human Rights program. Soldz is a clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst with a specialization in research methodologies. During the 2016-2017 academic year he is a Fellow-in-Residence at the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard University.
For the last decade, he has been a leader in a movement to remove psychologists from sometimes abusive national security interrogations and to change the American Psychological Association's (APA) permissive policies allowing that involvement. These efforts bore fruit in 2015 when a report commissioned by the APA (Hoffman Report) documented extensive collusion between the APA and the Defense Department. Release of the report led the APA to vote to remove psychologists from national security interrogations and from detention sites, such as Guantánamo, which the UN has declared operate in violation of international law. In response, in fall 2015, the Defense Department withdrew psychologists from any involvement in detainee relations at Guantánamo.
This work expanded beyond interrogations to encompass ethical issues raised by other forms of psychologist involvement in military and intelligence operations, an area known as "operational psychology." As part of this effort he wrote or coauthored over 100 articles, journal papers, and book chapters and was interviewed by press from around the world, including CNN, New York Times, Washington Post, NPR, and the Associated Press, among many others. Soldz was a lead author of last year's "All the President's Psychologists: The American Psychological Association's Secret Complicity with the White House and US Intelligence Community in Support of the CIA's 'Enhanced' Interrogation Program," featured on the front page of the May 1 The New York Times. He was President of Psychologists for Social Responsibility, a cofounder of the Coalition for an Ethical Psychology, and is an Advisor to Physicians for Human Rights.
Soldz is interested in ways in which the understanding of individual, group, and organizational dynamics provided by psychoanalysis can enrich social change efforts. Psychoanalysis, he believes, can help understand the “human factor” that can help or hinder effective change strategies.
Soldz, S. & McCullough, L. (Eds.), (2000). Reconciling empirical knowledge and clinical experience: The art and science of psychotherapy. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association Books.
Soldz, S. (1989). Do psychotherapists use distinct construct subsystems for construing clients and acquaintances?: A repertory grid study. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 8, 98-112.
Soldz, S., Budman, S., Demby, A. & Feldstein, M. (1990). Patient activity and outcome in group psychotherapy: New findings. International Journal of Group Psychotherapy, 40, 53-62.
Soldz S. & Soldz, E. (1989). A difficulty with the Functionally Independent Construction measure of cognitive differentiation. International Journal of Personal Construct Psychology, 2, 315-322.
Soldz, S. (1992). Negativity in psychotherapist evaluation of clients and personal acquaintances. International Journal of Personal Construct Psychology, 5, 393-411.
Soldz, S., Budman, S., & Demby, A. (1992). The relationship between Main Actor behaviors and treatment outcome in group psychotherapy. Psychotherapy research., 2, 52-62.
Soldz, S., Budman, S.H., Demby, A. & Merry, J. (1993). Representation of Personality Disorders in Circumplex and Five-Factor Space: Explorations with a Clinical Sample, Psychological Assessment, 5, 41-52.
Soldz, S., Budman, S.H., Demby, A. & Merry, J. (1993). Diagnostic Agreement Between the Personality Disorder Examination and the MCMI-II, Journal of Personality Assessment, 60, 486-499.
Soldz, S., Budman, S.H., Demby, A. & Merry, J. (1995). The relation of defensive style to personality pathology and the Big Five personality factors. Journal of Personality Disorders, 9 ,356-370.
Soldz, S., Budman, S.H., Demby, A. & Merry, J. (1995). A short form of the Inventory of Interpersonal Problems Circumplex Scales, Assessment, 2, 53-63.
Soldz, S., Budman, S.H., Demby, A. & Merry, J. (1995). Personality traits as seen by patients, therapists and other group members: The Big Five in personality disorder groups. Psychotherapy, 32, 678-687.
Soldz, S. & Vaillant, G.E. (1998). A 50-year longitudinal study of defense use among inner city men: A validation of the DSM-IV defense axis. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 186, 104-111.
Vaillant, G. E., Meyer, S., Muhamal, K. & Soldz, S. (1998). Are social supports in late midlife a cause or a result of successful physical aging? Psychological Medicine, 28, 1159-1168.
Soldz, S. & Vaillant, G.E. (1999). The Big Five personality traits and the life course: A 50-year longitudinal study. Journal of Research in Personality. [Selected as “Outstanding Paper of 1999”]
Kreiner, P., Soldz, S., Berger, M., Elliott, E., Reynes, J., Williams, C., & Rodriguez-Howard, M. (2001). Social indicator-based measures of substance abuse consequences, risk, and protection at the town level. Journal of Primary Prevention, 21, 339-365.
Soldz, S. & Cui, X. (2001). A risk factor index predicting adolescent cigarette smoking: A seven year longitudinal study. Psychology of Addictive Behavior, 15, 33-41.
Soldz, S., Panas, L., & Rodriguez-Howard, M. (2002). The reliability of the Massachusetts Substance Abuse Management Information System. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 58, 1057-1069.
Soldz, S., Clark, T.W., Stewart, E., Celebucki, C., & Klein-Walker, D. (2002). Decreased youth tobacco use in Massachusetts 1996 to 1999: Evidence of tobacco control effectiveness. Tobacco Control11(Supplement ii),, ii14-ii19.
Soldz, S. & Cui, X. (2002). Patterns of adolescent smoking: A seven-year longitudinal grouping analysis. Health Psychology, 21, 495-504.
Soldz, S., Dorsey, E. & Huyser, D. J. (2003). The cigar as a drug delivery device: Youth use of blunts. Addiction,98, 1379-1386.
Soldz, S., Huyser, D.J., & Dorsey, E. (2003). Characteristics of users of cigars, bidis, and kreteks and the relationship to cigarette use. Preventive Medicine, 37, 250-258.
Soldz, S., Huyser, D.J., & Dorsey, E. (2003). Youth preferences for cigar brands: Rates of use and characteristics of users. Tobacco Control, 12, 155-160.
Soldz, S. & Dorsey, E. (2005). Youth attitudes and beliefs toward alternative tobacco products: Cigars, bidis, and kreteks. Health Education and Behavior, 32, 549-566.
Soldz S. (2005). Pathways and prevention. (Editorial comment). Addiction, 10, 733-734.
Soldz, S. (2006). Models and meanings: Therapist effects and the stories we tell. (Invited commentary for Special Section). Psychotherapy Research, 16, 173-177.
Harrow, B., Tompkins, C.P., Mitchell, P., Smith, K.W., Soldz, S., Kasten , L., Fleming, K. (2006). Publicly Funded Managed Care and Adolescent Substance Abuse Treatment. American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, 32, 173-177.
Olson B. & Soldz S. (2007). Positive illusions and the necessity of a bright line forbidding psychologist involvement in detainee interrogations. Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy, 7-1, 1-10.
Soldz, S. (2007). Thinking critically in the midst of the maelstrom: Can psychoanalysis help us stay sane in an insane world? [Introduction to Special section: Ideology and the Clinic.] Psychotherapy and Politics International, 5, 163-170.
Altman, N., Cushman, P., Goldsmith, M., Hartman, S., Hollander, N., Lesser, R. Lotto, D., McCarroll, J., Peoples, K., Riethmiller, R., Samuels, A., Soldz, S., & Stopford, A. (2007). Discussion of Neil Altman's paper 'Psychoanalysis and war.' Psychotherapy and Politics International, 5, 184-214.
Olson, B. & Soldz, S. (2008). The ethics of interrogation and the American Psychological Association: A critique of policy and process. Philosophy, Ethics, and Humanities in Medicine, 3, 1-15.
Soldz, S. (2008). Psychology and coercive interrogations in historical perspective. Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 18, 592-613.
Olson, B. Soldz, S., & Davis, M. (2008). The ethics of interrogation and the American Psychological Association: A critique of policy and process. Philosophy, Ethics, and Humanities in Medicine, 3, 1-15. Available online at: http://www.peh-med.com/content/3/1/3
Soldz, S. (2011). Fighting torture and psychologist complicity. Peace Review, 23, 12-20.
Eidelson, R., Pilisuk, M, & Soldz, S. (2011). The dark side of “Comprehensive Soldier Fitness” American Psychologist, 66, 643-644.
Kimball, S. & Soldz, S. (2014). Medical professionalism and abuse of detainees in the war on terror. British Medical Journal, 348: g2947. [Editorial.]
Zaman, B. & Soldz S. (2016). Why cannibal? Representation and defense in the Meiwes “German cannibal" case. International Journal of Applied Psychoanalytic Studies 14, 69-80.
Soldz, S., Olson, B., & Arrigo, J.M. (2017). Interrogating the ethics of operational psychology. Journal of Social and Community Psychology, 27, 273-286.
Soldz, S. (2018). Principles determine practice: Commentary on World Psychiatric Association Declaration on Participation of Psychiatrists in Interrogation of Detainees. Torture, 27, 96-97. [Invited commentary.]
Soldz, S., & Arrigo, J.M., Frakt, D., Olson, B. (in press). Response to Staal: “Psychological ethics and operational psychology” — fundamental issues and methods. Peace and Conflict.
Soldz, S., & Arrigo, J.M., Frakt, D., Olson, B. (in press). Second response to Staal: Independent moral assessment, an essential requirement for ethical practice in operational psychology. Peace and Conflict.
Soldz S. (1987). The flight from relationship: Personal construct reflections on a psychoanalytic therapy. Chapter in G. Neimeyer & R. Neimeyer. (eds.). Personal construct therapy casebook. New York: Springer. Translated into Spanish as La fuga de la relacion: Reflexiones sobre la terapia psicoanalitcia desde la perspectiva de los constructos personales. In G. Neimeyer & R. Neimeyer. (eds.). (1989). Casos de terapia de constructos personales, Bilbao, Spain: Desclee de Brouwer, S.A.
Soldz, S. (1990). The therapeutic interaction: Research perspectives. In R. A. Wells & V. J. Giannetti, (Eds.). Handbook of the brief psychotherapies. New York: Plenum, 22-53.
Soldz, S. (1993). Beyond interpretation: Elaboration of transference in personal construct therapy. In L.M. Leitner & N.G.M. Dunnet (Eds.). Critical issues in personal construct therapy. Malabar, FL: Robert E. Krieger Publishing Co., 173-192.
Soldz, S. (1997). The Interpersonal Circumplex in clinical research. In R. Plutchik & H.R. Conte (Eds.), Circumplex models of personality and emotion. Washington, DC: APA, pp. 411-428.
Soldz, S. (2000). Toward a researcher-practitioner alliance: A personal journey. In S. Soldz, & L. McCullough, (Eds), Reconciling empirical knowledge and clinical experience: The art and science of psychotherapy. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association Books.
McCullough, L. & Soldz, S. (2000). Research and practice: Where are we? In S. Soldz, & L. McCullough, (Eds.), Reconciling empirical knowledge and clinical experience: The art and science of psychotherapy. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association Books.
Davis, M., Budman, S.H., & Soldz, S.J. (2000). The Individual Group Member Interpersonal Process Scale. In A.P. Beck, L.R. Greene & Lewis, C.M. (Eds.), Process in therapeutic groups: A handbook of systems of analysis. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
Soldz, S. & Shalom, S. (2009). Perspectives towards war and peace in the United States. In Malley-Morrison, K. (Ed.), International perspectives on war and peace. Westport, CT: Praeger.
Soldz, S. (2010). Psychologists defying torture: The path ahead. In Harris, A. & Botticelli, S. (Eds.), First, do no harm. Oxford, UK: Taylor and Francis, pp. 67-105.
Soldz, S. (2011). Psychologists, torture, and civil society: Complicity, institutional failure, and the struggle for professional transformation. In Cohn, M. (Ed.), The United States and Torture. New York: New York University Press, pp. 177-202.
Soldz, S. (2011). Deception Detection and Torture: The American Psychological Association Serves the Intelligence Services. In Zwerling, P. (Ed.), The CIA on Campus: Academic Freedom and the National Security State. Jefferson, NC: McFarland, pp. 113-146.
Eidelson , R., Pilisuk, M, & Soldz, S. (2011). The dark side of “Comprehensive Soldier Fitness.” American Psychologist, 66, 643-644.
Soldz, S. (1996) Final Evaluation Report: Project Second Beginning. A Pregnant and Postpartum Woman and Infants Demonstration Project funded by the Center for Substance Abuse Prevention. Sudbury, MA: Associates for Human Potential.
Briton, N.J., Clark, T.W., Soldz, S., & Krakow, M. (1997). Adolescent Substance Use in Massachusetts: Trends Among Public School Students 1984-1996. Boston: Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Prepared by Health and Addictions Research, Inc.
Kreiner, P., Soldz, S., Elliott, E.A., Berger, M., Reynes, J. & Cui, X. (1997). Massachusetts State Needs Assessment Project (MassSNAP): Prevention Needs Assessment Final Report. Boston: Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Prepared by Health and Addictions Research, Inc.
Soldz, S., Kagan, D., & Kue, P. C. (1997). Final Evaluation Report: Case Management for Racial/Ethnic Minorities in Treatment for Substance Abuse. A Center for Substance Abuse treatment Critical Populations Demonstration Grant awarded to the Drug and Alcohol Treatment Association of Rhode Island. Sudbury, MA: Advocates for Human Potential.
Soldz, S., Kagan, D., Kue, P.C., & Prost, C.A. (1997) Final Evaluation Report: Southeast Asian Youth and Family Development Project (SAYED). An Agency for Children, and Families funded Demonstration Project to the City of Providence Mayor’s Council of Drug and Alcohol Abuse. Sudbury, MA: Advocate for Human Potential.
Kreiner, P., Soldz, S., Elliott, E. Berger, M., and Reynes, J. (1998). Massachusetts State Treatment Needs Assessment Project: Social Indicator Study Final Report. Center for Substance Abuse Treatment contract no. 270-94-0016. Health and Addictions Research, Inc. for the Bureau of Substance Abuse Services, Massachusetts Department of Public Health.
Soldz, S. & the Methadone Phases of Treatment Team II (1999). Methadone Phases of treatment: A Pilot Study. Boston: Health & Addictions Research, Inc.
Soldz, S., Clark, T.W., Stewart, E., & Miller, B.A. (2000). Adolescent Tobacco Use in Massachusetts: Trends among Public School Students, 1984-1999. Boston: Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Prepared by Health and Addictions Research, Inc.
Soldz, S., Mulkern, V. (2004). Assessment of Children: Issues and Instruments. New Brunswick, NJ: Community Living Exchange at Rutgers/National Academy for State Health Policy. Available at: http://www.communitylivingta.info/openFile.php/fid/3259/did/1169.
Soldz, S. (2006). Evaluation as a Means to Sustainability in Real Choice Systems Change. Houston: ILRU Community Living Partnership: National State-to-State Technical Assistance Center. Available at: http://www.hcbs.org/files/91/4533/Vol_4_Iss_1.pdf.
Soldz, S. & Matsumoto, C. (2006). Strategic Planning for Addressing Tobacco-Related Health Disparities in Rhode Island: A Case Study Evaluation. Providence, RI: Rhode Island Department of Health Tobacco Control Program.
Raymond, N., Allen, S., Iacopino, V., Keller, A., Soldz, S., Reisner, S., & Bradshaw, J. (2010). Experiments in Torture: Evidence of Human Subject Research and Experimentation in the “Enhanced” Interrogation Program. Cambridge, MA: Physicians for Human Rights. [Listed by Discover magazine as one of the 100 top science stories of the year.]
Eidelson, R. & Soldz, S. (2012). Does Comprehensive Soldier Fitness Work: CSF Research Fails the Test. Coalition for an Ethical Psychology Working Paper. Available at: http://www.ethicalpsychology.org/Eidelson-&-Soldz-CSF_Research_Fails_the_Test.pdf.
Kimball, S.L. & Soldz, S. (in press). Medical professionalism and abuse of detainees in the war on terror. British Medical Journal. [Editorial.]
Soldz, S. (2007). “That psychologists have prevented abuse against detainees is a fantasy”: Answers to editor's questions on psychologists and interrogations. Scandinavian Journal of Psychology. Available at: http://www.psykologforbundet.se/www/sp/hemsida.nsf/objectsload/Tortyr_swe_eng/$file/Tortyr_swe_eng.pdf
Soldz, S. (2008). Ending the psychological mind games on detainees. Boston Globe, August 10. Available at: http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2008/08/10/ending_the_psychological_mind_games_on_detainees/
Online Social Commentary
Since 2003 I have written over 100 articles of social commentary. Most were on issues involving the intersection of psychology and social issues. Online publication venues included CounterPunch, OpEdNews, Jurist, Daily Kos, Alternet, Common Dreams, ZNet, Never In Our Names, Scoop (New Zealand).