• Introducing the Work of the Hearing Voices Network Quick View

     

    This collection includes six articles about the work of the Hearing Voices Network:

    Introducing the Work of the Hearing Voices Network— David Denborough

    An introduction by David Denborough

    The Use of Humour and Other Coping Strategies— Jon Williams

    Everyone’s experience of hearing voices is different. In this paper Jon Williams describes the ways in which he has come to live with the voices he hears and how humour plays a vital part. This paper also describes a number of creative coping strategies as well as discussing the influential work of the Hearing Voices Network.

    Glimpses of Peace— Sharon De Valda

    Trauma can be the main trigger or cause of voice-hearing in many people. In this paper, Sharon de Valda evocatively conveys how racism and sexism shape her experience of hearing voices and how she has in turn used her own experiences to assist other voice-hearers.

    From Paranoid Schizophrenia to Hearing Voices - and Other Class Distinctions— Mickey De Valda

    While not commonly discussed, class relations have a significant influence in relation to people’s experiences of mental health and hearing voices in particular. In this paper, Mickey de Valda describes how experiences of class shape his experience and how this has influenced his work with the Hearing Voices Network.

    Partnership— Julie Downs

    In this paper, Julie Downs (Co-ordinator of the National Office of the Hearing Voices Network) discusses the importance of thoughtful partnerships between those who hear voices and those who do not. Both the hazards and possibilities of these partnerships are considered, particularly in relation to matters of power, politics and control.

    Altering the Balance of Power: Working with Voices— Peter Bullimore

    Through sharing stories of therapeutic work, this paper describes how issues of abuse and power are vital considerations when working with voice-hearers. Not only is voice-hearing often the result of abuse, but voice-hearing itself can be an experience of abuse. Peter Bullimore describes how he is interested in ensuring that abusive voices are challenged and their influence reduced, and how positive voices can be acknowledged and cherished. The paper also tells stories of a recently established group for people experiencing ‘paranoia’ that is having surprising success, and identifies significant factors that influence the process of recovery. The author also shares some of his own experiences of psychosis and how these influence his work in this area.

     

  • Poetic resistance: Witnessing Bahman’s resistance to torture and political violence— Vikki Reynolds, ‘Bahman’, Sekneh Hammoud-Beckett, Colin James Sanders & Gwen Haworth Quick View

    This writing presents an orientation to work alongside survivors of torture and political violence centred in witnessing resistance and an activist informed ethical stance for decolonising and antioppression practice (Reynolds & polanco, 2012). This includes descriptions of what constitutes torture and political violence, and understandings of witnessing, and resistance as ever present and useful despite the fact that resistance is often not enough to stop oppression (Wade, 1997; Reynolds, 2010a).

    This writing highlights Bahman, a survivor of torture from Iran, and illuminates his poetic resistance to torture, including poems that Bahman wrote during our therapeutic work together. I will provide enough context of the political situation and particular acts of violence and torture so that the acts of resistance in Bahman’s poems are understandable, and make visible structures of safety (Richardson & Reynolds, 2014, in press) and accountability practices. Bahman’s poems are interspersed throughout the text and following each of his poems there is a link to Gwen Haworth’s film of the poem read by Bahman in Farsi and Colin James Sanders in English. Bahman then reflects on the experience of re-visiting his resistance, our therapeutic work together, and his poems through an interview with Colin.

    Finally, Sekneh Hammoud-Beckett offers a reflection of this work from her location as a woman from a Muslim background and as a therapist with a commitment to creative resistance (2007).

  • The Narratives of Love: Addressing the Issue of Love in a Therapeutic Context— Elena Smith Quick View

    This paper explores the effect of addressing the issue of love in a therapeutic context. I have no intention of drawing any conclusions about the phenomena of love as such, but I intend to describe what happened when I purposely chose to address the question of love in therapeutic conversations. I was curious to explore these questions: What are people’s stories of love? What are the practices of love in people’s lives? What are the meanings they ascribe to love? And how does a person’s concept of love shape their thoughts and actions?

  • Talking about sex: Narrative approaches to discussing sex life in therapy— Ron Findlay Quick View

    How do we discuss sex issues in therapy with a narrative and post-structuralist, postcolonial approach? This paper discusses the ethics and practices of narrative approaches to talking about sex in therapy. It discusses ways to reduce the influence of shame and embarrassment, promote local knowledge and skills, and to minimise the impact of the gender and sexuality of the therapist.

  • Exploring the Meaning of Tattoos— Mike Boucher Quick View

    In this short paper the author describes some of the multiple meanings that tattoos can hold for people, including ‘markings of transitions’, ‘rejecting normalising judgements’ and ‘remembering important learnings’. Through describing the stories of one woman’s tattoos and their meanings, this paper invites therapists to consider the significance that tattoos hold in some people’s lives and ways of taking this into account in the therapy room.

    • Exploring the Meaning of Tattoos— Mike Boucher Quick View
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    • Exploring the Meaning of Tattoos— Mike Boucher
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    • In this short paper the author describes some of the multiple meanings that tattoos can hold for people, including ‘markings of transitions’, ‘rejecting normalising judgements’ and ‘remembering important learnings’. Through describing the stories of one woman’s tattoos and their meanings, this paper invites therapists to consider the significance that tattoos hold in some people’s lives and ways of taking this…
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  • Feminism, Therapy and Narrative Ideas: Exploring Some Not So Commonly Asked Questions— compiled by Shona Russell & Maggie Carey Quick View

    In this paper we have been interested to engage with some not so commonly asked questions about feminism, therapy and narrative ideas. So we asked a number of therapists who are engaged with narrative ideas some questions about what feminism means to them, how it influences their work and what feminist issues they are currently grappling with. What followed was an invigorating and challenging process.

    Many of the people we approached expressed that they wished they could spend more time thinking about these sorts of questions. Some people spoke of regret that these sorts of conversations are not more common.

    In response, we would like to invite all readers to become involved in an ongoing project around these issues. In future editions of the International Journal of Narrative Therapy and Community Work we will be organising a regular column on the theme ‘feminism, therapy and narrative ideas’. At the end of this piece we have listed a number of different themes about which we would love to hear from practitioners. We hope that the following questions and answers will spark your imagination and that you will then write to us with your thoughts and reflections.

    But first, on with the questions – and perhaps the first one is the most difficult … What is feminism?

  • Journeys in the bush— Ben Knowles Quick View

    This paper begins a process of joining ideas and practices of Narrative Therapy and Bush Adventure Therapy. Through examples drawn from 9–12 day bush journeys with young men and women who are experiencing difficulty in their lives, it invites the reader to imagine the storying potential of such experiences and consider the practices that surround and support them. The paper highlights the importance of developing and maintaining collegial relationships that support young people to realise and extend their existing knowledge and skill. It explores how we traverse between the known and familiar territories of people’s lives and the otherworldly landscapes of the bush journey to create fertile ground for making new stories.

    • Journeys in the bush— Ben Knowles Quick View
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    • Journeys in the bush— Ben Knowles
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    • This paper begins a process of joining ideas and practices of Narrative Therapy and Bush Adventure Therapy. Through examples drawn from 9–12 day bush journeys with young men and women who are experiencing difficulty in their lives, it invites the reader to imagine the storying potential of such experiences and consider the practices that surround and support them. The paper…
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  • Narrative practice as an ethical position and the moral legitimacy of narrative therapy— Christoffer Haugaard Quick View

    Narrative practice involves questioning and resisting dominant cultural truths in both its theory and practices. It may even function as a form of activism. This paper attempts to raise questions about the good of such an activism and the moral legitimacy of practitioners engaging the people who consult them in cultural resistance. I shall attempt to extract hints of an implicit ethical position in narrative practice, and point to a moral rationality for raising questions about the legitimacy of acts of cultural resistance, and suggest some possible implications of such an enquiry. This draws on the ideas of moral philosopher, Alasdair MacIntyre.

  • Protecting Relationships from the Ongoing Effects of Childhood Sexual Abuse— Jussey Verco, David Tully, Geoff Minge Quick View

    This paper describes ways of working with male partners of women who experienced sexual abuse as children. In response to requests from women, groups were held with male partners to provide information about childhood sexual abuse, to enable the men to speak about ways in which they have tried to support their partners, and to discuss men’s experiences and responses. Opportunities were also created to deconstruct unhelpful or ‘dangerous’ ideas around the complexities of childhood sexual abuse.

  • The Getting of Wisdoms— Cate Ingram & Amaryll Perlesz Quick View

    An action research project was conducted by a public family therapy agency, in Melbourne, Australia, to investigate the impact of the writing of client stories and the subsequent reading of these stories to others in similar circumstances. This paper describes some of the effects this process had on individuals and families who authored their ‘Wisdom Narratives’ in the hope of inspiring and supporting others. Going through the process of putting their story/struggle into words on paper enabled people to recognise their own agency and influence, while reading stories out loud back to the author engendered self-compassion. In conclusion, the creative process of penning narratives of change might now be considered as having an important impact in generating self-worth and sense of agency.

    • The Getting of Wisdoms— Cate Ingram & Amaryll Perlesz Quick View
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    • The Getting of Wisdoms— Cate Ingram & Amaryll Perlesz
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    • An action research project was conducted by a public family therapy agency, in Melbourne, Australia, to investigate the impact of the writing of client stories and the subsequent reading of these stories to others in similar circumstances. This paper describes some of the effects this process had on individuals and families who authored their ‘Wisdom Narratives’ in the hope of…
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  • Researching People’s Experience of Narrative Therapy: Acknowledging the Contribution of the ‘Client’ to What Works in Counselling Conversations— Amanda Redstone Quick View

    This paper explores the possibility of developing a way of evaluating narrative therapy conversations that acknowledges clients’ contribution to ‘what works’ in counselling conversations, and at the same time contributes to further rich description of clients’ preferred stories of identity.

  • Decentring Research Practice— Andrew Tootell Quick View

    This article presents a brief account of one therapist’s journey to develop a research approach that was consistent with their values and practice as a therapist. This journey led to the development of a ‘De-centred research practice’ based upon an ethic of collaboration and equity, which seeks to document the ‘local’ skills and knowledge of the research participants.

    • Decentring Research Practice— Andrew Tootell Quick View
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    • Decentring Research Practice— Andrew Tootell
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    • This article presents a brief account of one therapist’s journey to develop a research approach that was consistent with their values and practice as a therapist. This journey led to the development of a ‘De-centred research practice’ based upon an ethic of collaboration and equity, which seeks to document the ‘local’ skills and knowledge of the research participants.
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