Speaking the Unspeakable: Bearing Witness to the Stories of Political Violence, War and Terror— Pennie Blackburn


A paper such as this cannot do justice to the multi-storied nature of work with refugee people. I have chosen to focus on aspects of the work which relate to ‘speaking the unspeakable’. In doing so I shall be looking at ways in which, as therapists, we can bear witness to the stories that people bring with them when they are forced to migrate. I will look at the way in which we (the people I work with and I) try to find ways to give voice to their experiences that are restorative and that contribute to their capacity to re-claim or to claim identity.