Critical texts for those new to critical psychology

~Britta Wigginton (

The field of critical psychology can seem overwhelming.

I speak from personal experience. I completed my PhD in a department that was entirely positivist (‘scientific’), with the exception of my supervisor who encouraged me, despite being in the first month of my PhD, to attend the 2011 ISCHP conference in Adelaide. For me, critical psychology has been as much a professional as it has a personal (re)education into the world.

critical psychology reading list

If you’re new to critical psychology or to ISCHP, I want to let you know that there’s no need to worry about where to begin reading or learning. This blog is dedicated to you. To be honest, I wish I started my PhD with a blog like this – a guide through what is a complex and evolving field.

However, I want to preface this by saying that this is by no means an exhaustive list of potential readings but rather a starting guide1 for those who are new to, or interested in learning about, critical psychology. We have an incredible community of critical psychology scholars so this is just a small selection of our many critical texts.

I’ve separated this starting guide into three sections: books, articles and other resources/texts, with hyperlinks where appropriate.


  • Fox, D., Prilleltensky, I., & Austin, S. (2009). Critical psychology: An introduction (2nd Ed). London: SAGE. The following two chapters are publicly available:
  • Gough, B., & McFadden, M. (2001). Critical social psychology: An introduction. Basingstoke: Palgrave.
  • Lyons, A. C., & Chamberlain, K. (2006). Health psychology: A critical introduction: Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  • Murray, M. (2015). Critical health psychology (2nd Ed). New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Parker, I. (2015). Handbook of Critical Psychology. London: Routledge.
  • Rohleder, P. (2012). Critical Issues in clinical and health psychology. London: SAGE.
  • Stainton Rogers, W. (2011). Social Psychology (2nd Ed). England: Open University Press.


Other resources/texts:

If you can recommend any other key readings, we’d love you to share these in the comment section at the bottom of this blog.

Can’t access the texts? Often researchers will send you their article free of charge if you email them. Otherwise you can always tweet the link under the hashtag #Icanhazpdf and somebody with access may tweet you the article. Finally look out for websites like Sci Hub that are part of the open access publishing movement (breaking down expensive firewalls and making research papers free). At the time of writing the Sci Hub’s website appears to be down but you can read about it here.

Happy reading!


4 thoughts on “Critical texts for those new to critical psychology

  1. Brett June 16, 2016 / 10:19 pm

    Sci-hub is still available on http://scihub22266oqcxt.onion/ using TorBrowser and although other versions of the site are often no longer available, the TorBrowser version isn’t able to be taken down.

  2. Dani June 17, 2016 / 8:33 am

    This a really helpful blog Britta – thanks!

  3. site to help others September 29, 2017 / 2:21 pm

    Thank you for this–is there anywhere in the world where one can follow a postgraduate course in this however?

    • Dennis Fox May 22, 2018 / 7:36 pm

      My list of study options is incomplete and out of date, but might be worth a look –

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