Narrative Therapy

The Dulwich Centre describes Narrative Therapy thus:

'Narrative therapy is premised on the idea that the lives and the relationships of persons are shaped by:

A narrative therapy assists persons to resolve problems by:

Narrative therapy has particular links with Family Therapy and those therapies which have a common ethos of respect for the client, and an acknowledgement of the importance of context, interactlon, and the social constructlon of meaning.'

Michael White expands on this conception here, and in the following extract from an interview with Ken Stewart (Psychotic experience and discourse. Chapter 5 in M. White (1995) Re-Authoring Lives: Interviews and Essays. Adelaide: Dulwich Centre Publications). The preamble concerning aetiology is included here so as to contextualise the re-orientation of the 'expert's position' that is integral to therapeutic practice as so conceived:

(White, 1995: 121-2)

Theoretical Resources

This view of Michael White's, who is one of the founders of this therapeutic approach, draws on a range of theoretical views as to the nature of language, conversation, and the way people come to make sense of their 'being-in-the-world' that we are aiming to provide access to here.

An example of 'narrative practice' conveys more of the nitty-gritty of this approach

A Bibliography for Narrative Therapy has been made available by Natalka Sawchuk.

The Journal of Pastoral Counselling has a recent special issue The Opening of Narrative Space and has made the full text available.

Master'sWork Video Productions has 'an historical series of training videotapes demonstrating the new paradigms in clinical work with couples, families and individuals' available for sale. Featured practitioners are:

Collaborative Language Systems Possibility
Narrative Therapy Solution-Focused Therapy Others

Tom Andersen

Bill O'Hanlon

David Epston

Insoo Kim Berg

Luigi Boscolo

Betty MacKune Karrer

Harlene Anderson

Michael White

Eve Lipchik

 Scott Miller

Harry Goolishian

Gene Combs/
Jill Freedman

Mark Mitchell

Zoy Kazan

John Walter

A reading list is in preparation for a possible course on the theoretical bases of narrative therapy.

NEW! A joint project involving the School of Psychology at Massey University in Palmerston North, New Zealand, the Virtual Faculty, and the Family Center in Lower Hutt, New Zealand is now, as of October 1998, 'in process'. For details, please go to our collaborative development site, and when prompted use guest as your username and test as your password. NEW!


See also related sites:

The main electronic forum for narrative therapy issues is the MFTC-L listserver for discussion of issues related to marriage and family therapy or that are of interest to marriage and family therapists.
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