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9 Ways of understanding

Rose, Chris Karnac Books ePub

One of the ways in which we try to deal with the sense of hopelessness is to understand more about what is happening. This chapter looks at some of the concepts that have been developed to increase our intellectual grasp of the underlying divisions and conflicts that all societies share.

The scapegoat

Whenever the PD group is struggling with the powerful themes of conflict and division, the word “scapegoat” is likely to be heard above the rough seas. It is the one “group concept” that everyone has heard of, and maybe as a result, is frequently misapplied.

The original “scapegoat” of the Old Testament was sent into the wilderness, carrying the sins of the community. The goat took with it the bad parts of the group, leaving only the good in a rejuvenated, cleansed society. This worked well until just by virtue of living, things got messy again, and another goat was needed to get rid of the rubbish. There was also a good goat, whose fate was to be sacrificed to the Lord. The devil had one goat, God had the other, and in this way good and bad were split apart and dealt with. The polarisation of good and bad is a powerful and continuous dynamic in society, and thus also in the PD group.

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Medium 9781780490496

Chapter One: Principles of Forensic Group Therapy

Karnac Books ePub

John Woods

The place of forensic group therapy

In her landmark paper, Estela Welldon states, “Group analytic psychotherapy is frequently the best form of treatment, not only for severely disturbed perverse patients but also for sexual abusers, and sexually abused patients” (Welldon, 1996, p. 63). The experience at the Portman Clinic is that group treatment has been an effective form of psychotherapy, not for all, but perhaps the majority of our patients. The effectiveness of group treatment in general is being substantiated by empirical evidence (Burlingame, Fishman, & Mosier, 2003; Leichsenring & Leibing, 2003; Lorentzen, 2000; Taylor, 2000). In addition, at a time when cost effectiveness is ever more crucial, it is important to note that society also benefits from this treatment (Dolan, Warren, Menzies, & Norton, 1996; Hall & Mullee, 2000). Although there is much evidence for the effectiveness of the group-analytic model (Blackmore, Tantum, Parry, & Chambers, 2012), the majority of group work in many settings is highly structured, using a cognitive approach in order to correct faulty patterns of thinking and provide skills training (Saunders, 2008). This has meant that group process has been largely unexplored (Morgan & Flora, 2002, p. 204). The aim of this publication is to redress that balance by adding a psychodynamic perspective.

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Medium 9781782202127

Introduction to Part I

Anderson, Maxine K. Karnac Books ePub

Part I examines some of the concepts about coming alive, the birth of the experiencing mind.

Chapter One reviews philosophical (McGilchrist, Hegel) and psychoanalytic (Freud, Klein, Winnicott, Civitarese, Ogden, Bass, Siegel) views about the birth of subjectivity, the birth of the experiencing “I”.

Chapter Two considers neuropsychiatric views (McGilchrist, Feinberg, Solms, Friston, Siegel, Bolte Taylor) that are verifying the importance of sensory-based functions as essential for the deepening integration of the subjective self. It also reviews the paradigm shift in the neuroscientific work of Solms, Damasio, Panksepp, and others, which emphasises the primacy of consciousness inevitably accompanied by intrinsic emotion. This shift prompts one to ponder why, for over a century, there was a general agreement amid psychology and psychoanalysis that consciousness itself required cortical deciphering. The assumption has been that wisdom of experience lay with the cortex. Later chapters try to address this myth of wisdom residing only in cognition, which might be due to the propaganda that left-brain functions broadcast.

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Bion, Wilfred R. Karnac Books PDF



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The Homestead, Iver Heath

March 22

Francesca dear,

This does not seem to be a very sensible time in the morning to start writing you a letter but then I feel I cannot wait till tomorrow. Besides this is not really a letter but just a note and tomorrow I shall write a letter.

I walked back with a great wind blowing hazy clouds across a moon which was never visible but made all the trees stand out a deep grey against the silvery meadows and water. And all the time I could see you, and still see you, looking more ravishingly beautiful, as you did all the evening when I was with you, than anyone could believe possible. You were kind to be like that.

And here I shall have to stop for my thoughts will not flow freely when I feel that all I would say cannot be written – or certainly not when I keep thinking of mundane things such as whether I shall be in time to catch a morning post with this, or even whether there is a morning post on a Good Friday.

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Chapter Fifteen - The Other, the Stranger, the Unconscious: Psychoanalysis and Multi-Ethnic Therapeutic Relationships

Karnac Books ePub

Ludovica Grassi

“But you're the one,” Avram smiled, “you're the one who showed me what I came up with.” This quotation is from David Grossman's 2008 novel To the End of the Land, in which we meet two brothers: the elder does not take after either parent, although his facial features to a certain extent do recall their dear and unfortunate friend, whom they have not seen for many years and who has been the focus of much of their love and care. The second is the son of the mother and the couple's very same friend. However, his father has never wanted anything to do with him, while he was devotedly raised by the father of the elder child. Furthermore, his birth brought the couple back together again who, following the arrival of the firstborn, had gone through an extremely painful separation.

The drama of the main characters’ story is heightened by being set in the socio-historical context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, while also compounded by inherent issues of integration and expulsion, as well as mutual non-acknowledgement. Against this background subjectivisation and historicisation processes force the protagonists to come to terms with either the representative void of full trauma or with an excess of events which an interminable war lasting generations prevents from being properly worked out and thought through. This non-definition of placement of the self or of the other, this entwinement of familiarity and strangeness running through the entire novel expresses the psychic process which has been called for, ever since the beginning of life when one individual first meets another. This psychic work takes on a special form when the “other” is from a culturally and experientially distant world that is unknown and difficult to communicate with.

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