Trauma, Tragedy, Therapy
208 pages, 6 x 9
Release Date:15 Sep 2009
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Trauma, Tragedy, Therapy

The Arts and Human Suffering

Jessica Kingsley Publishers
Stephen K. Levine's new book explores the nature of traumatic experience and the therapeutic role of the arts and arts therapies in responding to it. It suggests that by re-imagining painful and tragic experiences through art-making, we may release their fixity and negative hold on our lives and resist the temptation to assume the role of the victim. Among the many concerns that the book addresses is the damage done by the tendency to adopt stock methods of understanding and superficial explanations for the depths, complexities, wonders, and exasperations of human experience. The book explores the chaos and fragmentation inherent in both art and human existence and the ways in which memory and imagination can find meaning by acknowledging this chaos and embodying it in appropriate forms. The book builds on the important theories of Stephen K. Levine's previous book, Poiesis: The Language of Psychology and the Speech of the Soul, also published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers. It challenges dominant psychological perspectives on trauma and provides a new framework for arts therapists, psychotherapists, psychologists and social scientists to understand the effectiveness of the arts therapies in responding to human suffering.
'This is a brilliant book...those who love to search for meaning in a meaningleess world will find much to ponder on in this book.'- The Independent Practitioner'Stephen K. Levine's TRAUMA, TRAGEDY, THERAPY: THE ARTS AND HUMAN SUFFERING provides a powerful exploration of the nature of trauma and how the arts and arts therapies can help...His challeneges popular psychological perspectives on trauma and provides a different framework for arts therapists and psychologists to understand its course and effectiveness. Health libraries strong in psychology will find this a fine pick.'- The Midwest Book Revies'Deeply prychological, Stephen Levine goes over being at the bottom of life, chaos, healing, and the human body. Trauma, Tragedy, Therapy is a top pick for addition to arts and psychology collections for community and college libraries.'- The Midwest Book Reviews'On the whole, Levine makes an important contribution to the field of trauma study by identifying philosophical problems within the current field of trauma study. He then shows how a new discourse, a new imagination of the problem and of new possibilities, can be created through the expressive arts therapies...What Levine has done with Trauma, Tragedy, Therapy is an enormous gift to the literature on the psychology of trauma, and it lays the foundation for careful and productive new studies.' -PsycCRITIQUES
Stephen K. Levine is Professor Emeritus of Social Science at York University (Toronto), Vice-Provost and Dean of the Doctoral Program in Expressive Arts Therapy, Education, Consulting and Social Change at the European Graduate School on Switzerland and Co-Director of ISIS-Canada, a training programme in expressive arts therapy. He has earned doctorates in philosophy and anthropology from the New School for Social Research, and was a Post-Doctoral Fellow in Expressive Therapy at Lesley University. He is the author of Poiesis: The Language of Psychology and the Speech of the Soul, co-author of Principles and Practice of Expressive Arts Therapy: Toward a Therapeutic Aesthetics, and co-editor of Foundations of Expressive Arts Therapy: Theoretical and Clinical Perspectives, all published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers. He is Editor of Poiesis: A Journal of the Arts and Communication and is a registered Expressive Arts Therapist (IEATA), actor and poet.
Acknowledgments. Foreword. Introduction. Part I. From Trauma to Tragedy. 1.. Going to the Ground: Reflections on the Foundations of Expressive Arts Therapy. 2. Mimetic Wounds: From Trauma to Tragedy. 3. Trauma, Therapy and the Arts: Towards a Dionysian Poiesis. Part II. Chaos Into Form. 4. Order and Chaos in Therapy and the Arts: An Encounter. 5. Is Order Enough? Is Chaos too Much? Art, Therapy and the Search for Wholeness - A Dialogue. 6. The Expressive Body: A Fragmented Totality. 7. The Second Coming: Beauty, Chaos and the Arts. 8. The Art of Despair: Therapy After Godot. Chapter 9. Researching Information - Imagining Research. 10. A Fragmented Totality? An Interview. Part III. Poiesis After Post-Modernism. 11. Poiesis and Praxis: Between Art and Action. 12. Be Like Jacques: Mimesis with a Difference. 13. What Can I Say Dear After I've Said Sorry? Poiesis After Post-Modernism. References.
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