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Handbook of International Social WorkHuman Rights, Development, and the Global Profession$
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Lynne M. Healy and Rosemary J. Link

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780195333619

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195333619.001.0001

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The History of the Development of Social Work

The History of the Development of Social Work

(p.55) 8 The History of the Development of Social Work
Handbook of International Social Work

Lynne M. Healy

Oxford University Press

This chapter summarizes the beginnings of social work in diverse parts of the world. It discusses ways in which professionals have addressed common challenges and tensions, including professionalization, survival in times of oppression, and expansion in times of special opportunity. Other themes of note are the role of national founders or pioneers and cross-national borrowing and adaptation of models and applications of social work, including the influence of external organizations such as the United Nations. The beginnings of the profession are highlighted to demonstrate the breadth of the spread of the profession and to suggest issues for further research to explain patterns of institutionalization, stability and instability, and indigenization.

Keywords:   international social work, history, social work practice, professionalization, oppression, national founders, cross-national borrowing

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