Exchanging stories, skills and songs: the possibilities of narrative practice

In this keynote to the Fifth International Conference of Pluralistic Counselling and Psychotherapy, I introduced metaphoric narrative practices such as the Team of Life, Tree of Life, Kite of Life, Umbrella of Life and Recipe of Life. These methodologies combine aspects of local folk culture with narrative practice and seek to enable people to make contributions to others and towards addressing whatever broader social issues they are grappling with. I also showed a short video related to the Team of Life approach: “Trying not to fight with friends: Tips from the Stay Strong Football Club”. The keynote ended with a song, trying to demonstrate the principle of transforming anguish to art and social contribution. This song was crafted from the words of ‘Jess’ and in collaboration with feminist narrative therapist Erin Costello.

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