Art Therapy and Social Action: Treating the World's Wounds

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Frances Kaplan
Jessica Kingsley Publishers, Sep 15, 2006 - Social Science - 272 pages

Art Therapy and Social Action is an exciting exploration of how professionals can incorporate the techniques and approaches of art therapy in their work to address social problems. Examining the expanding role of art practitioner as social activist, leading art therapists and other professionals show how creative methods can be used effectively to resolve conflicts, manage aggression, heal trauma and build communities. The contributors provide examples of innovative programs on a range of topics, including those designed to address gun crime, homelessness, racism and experiences of terrorism, among others.

This timely book provides new techniques and successful models for art therapists, counselors and mental health practitioners working directly with the challenges of modern society.


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Part 1 Expanding the Therapeutic Role
Part II Acting and Reflecting on the Action
Part III Resolving Conflict
Part IV Confronting Anger and Aggression
Part V Healing Trauma
Part VI Building Community

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Page 23 - The images of the unconscious place a great responsibility upon a man. Failure to understand them, or a shirking of ethical responsibility, deprives him of his wholeness and imposes a painful fragmentariness on his life.
Page 26 - ... unalienated social existence, between individual control and collective power, between the liberation of each person and the liberation of a whole people. Moreover, psychology has often contributed to obscuring the relationship between personal estrangement and social oppression, presenting the pathology of persons as if it were something removed from history and society, and behavioral disorders as if they played themselves out entirely in the individual plane. (Martin-Baro 1994:27) When we...
Page 26 - ... appraisals and not merely apperceptions of our intra-subjective selves. My practice tells me I can no longer distinguish clearly between neurosis of self and neurosis of world, psychopathology of self and psychopathology of world. Moreover, it tells me that to place neurosis and psychopathology solely in personal reality is a delusional repression of what is actually, realistically, being experienced. This further implies that my theories of neurosis and categories of psychopathology must be...

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About the author (2006)

Frances F. Kaplan is an eminent art therapist and teaches graduate art therapy courses at Marylhurst College and Portland State University, both in Oregon. She has published widely, presented at national conferences, worked for peace organizations.

Lani Gerity worked with dissociative adults for more than a decade in New York and has presented internationally and written on the dissociative patient, and on puppetry with adults. She currently practises art therapy in Ontario, Canada, assists with an art therapy programme for refugee children, serves as a visiting faculty member at New York University, and leads puppet-making workshops.

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