Popular Culture Texts and Young People: Making Meaning, Honouring Resistance, and Becoming Harry Potter— Julie Tilsen & David Nylund
The article discusses how popular culture produces much of the materials out of which people fashion their identities. These materials include images and messages from the music, TV, film, technology and fashion industries.
Finding Grief: Using Fiction-writing to Communicate Experience after the Death of a Loved One— Susannah Sheffer
This paper tells the story of how a fifteen-year-old boy, in the aftermath of his mother’s death, discovered a way to articulate and share his experience through writing, particularly through the creation of a fictional character. The paper looks closely at the relationship between the teenager and the author who worked with him, and at the way in which fiction can offer a unique opportunity to create a character that is ‘not oneself’ while paradoxically allowing for a deeper exploration of one’s own emotional landscape.
Seasons of Life: Ex-detainees Reclaiming Their Lives— Nihaya Mahmud Abu-Rayyan
This paper describes therapeutic/psychosocial support work with Palestinian ex-prisoners. This work draws upon imagery from nature’s seasons and elements to create conversations based on a ‘seasons of life’ metaphor. This metaphor enables ex-detainees to trace their journey through the stages of detention, incarceration, and release into society. This approach offers opportunities for ex-detainees to offer double-storied testimonies of their prison experiences and to draw upon the skills and knowledges they used to endure incarceration in order to move forward with their lives.
Using Narrative Approaches with a Young Girl in India— Kalyani Vishwanatha & Uma Hirisave
This paper summarises conversations with a ten-year-old girl in India, using ideas and practices from narrative therapy to revise a relationship with fear and ‘helplessness’. The paper also includes a discussion of children and mental health issues in India, and suggestions for school-based early intervention programs for children at risk of developing emotional problems.
A Multiplicity of Desire: Polyamory and Relationship Counselling— Barbara Baumgartner
Reflecting on a personal and professional journey, this paper invites readers to consider prevailing ideas of monogamy and its effects on relationship counselling. The term and practice of polyamory are introduced, highlighting how society’s training in monogamy obscures this choice. An interview with experience consultants challenges some of the myths of polyamorous relationships and makes suggestions for counsellors.
Is This Sex Addiction?: Questioning ‘Sex Addiction’ in Therapeutic Counselling Conversations— Ash Rehn
This paper examines the concept of ‘sex addiction’, and its increasing popularity since the emergence of AIDS in gay communities in the 1980s. Adopting narrative therapy’s ethical orientations of decentred yet influential positioning, and being in a ‘lifelong apprenticeship’, the author worked with a number of men to renegotiate their relationship with ‘sex addiction’ in their lives. This work included various maps of narrative practice, including the Statement of Position Map / externalising conversations, re-membering conversations, the absent but implicit, and deconstructive conversations.