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Handbook of Community-Based Clinical Practice$
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Anita Lightburn and Phebe Sessions

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780195159226

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195159226.001.0001

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A Communal Perspective for the Relational Therapies

A Communal Perspective for the Relational Therapies

(p.75) 6 A Communal Perspective for the Relational Therapies
Handbook of Community-Based Clinical Practice

Lynn Hoffman

Oxford University Press

This chapter proposes a framework for the relational therapies that focus on the communal creation of meaning. The therapist is both the knitter and the yarns: singular, yet one of many. Just as family therapists took advantage of a newly seen unit, and the family, to enlarge their range of choices, so can postmodern therapists take advantage of the shift to the nonessentialist position of social construction theory. However, even that theory takes a backseat to a heightened interest in practice. Instead of asking, “What are the philosophical underpinnings of our work?”, we now ask “What is the knit one, purl two, of the kind of social knitting preferred by effective therapists of any school?” The nature of these more communal practices is considered within the historical context of the family therapy field.

Keywords:   family therapy, social work practice, relational therapy, clinical practice

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