The Art of Narrative Psychiatry: Stories of Strength and Meaning

Paperback | October 16, 2013

bySuellen Hamkins

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Narrative psychiatry empowers patients to shape their lives through story. Rather than focusing only on finding the source of the problem, in this collaborative clinical approach psychiatrists also help patients diagnose and develop their sources of strength. By encouraging the patient toexplore their personal narrative through questioning and story-telling, the clinician helps the patient participate in and discover the ways in which they construct meaning, how they view themselves, what their values are, and who it is exactly that they want to be. These revelations in turn informclinical decision-making about what it is that ails them, how they'd like to treat it, and what recovery might look like. The Art of Narrative Psychiatry is the first comprehensive description of narrative psychiatry in action. Engaging and accessible, it demonstrates how to help patients cultivate their personal sources of strength and meaning as resources for recovery. Illustrated with vivid case reports and in-depthaccounts of therapeutic conversations, the book offers psychiatrists and psychotherapists detailed guidance in the theory and practice of this collaborative approach. Drawing inspiration from narrative therapy, post-modern philosophy, humanistic medicine, and social justice movements - and repletewith ways to more fully manifest the intentions of the mental health recovery model - this engaging new book shows how to draw on the standard psychiatric toolbox while also maintaining focus on the patient's vision of the world and illuminating their skills and strengths. Written by a pioneer inthe field, The Art of Narrative Psychiatry describes a breadth of nuanced, powerful narrative practices, including externalizing problems, listening for what is absent but implicit, facilitating re-authoring conversations, fostering communities of support, and creating therapeutic documents. The Art of Narrative Psychiatry addresses mental health challenges that range from mild to severe, including anxiety, depression, despair, anorexia/bulimia, perfectionism, OCD, trauma, psychosis, and loss. True to form, the author narrates her own experience throughout, sharing her internal thoughtsand decision-making processes as she listens to patients. The Art of Narrative Psychiatry is necessary reading for any professional seeking to empower their patients and become a better, more compassionate clinician.

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Narrative psychiatry empowers patients to shape their lives through story. Rather than focusing only on finding the source of the problem, in this collaborative clinical approach psychiatrists also help patients diagnose and develop their sources of strength. By encouraging the patient toexplore their personal narrative through questio...

SuEllen Hamkins, MD, is Assistant Director of the Center for Counseling and Psychological Health at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston, Massachusetts.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:224 pages, 8 × 5 × 0.68 inPublished:October 16, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:019998204X

ISBN - 13:9780199982042

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Table of Contents

IntroductionPart I Foundations of Narrative Psychiatry1. What is Narrative Psychiatry?2. Connecting with Compassion: The Therapeutic Relationship3. Starting with Stories of Success: The Initial Psychiatric Consultation4. Unpacking the Problem: Understanding Symptoms and Suffering5. Cultivating Stories of Strength and Meaning: The Course of Treatment6. Collaborating in Considering Treatment Options: Medicine and Other Psychiatric ResourcesPart II Narrative Psychiatry in Practice7. Finding Lost Stories of Love: Remembering Love and Legacy Amid Loss8. Finding Ones Voice: Recovering from Trauma9. Finding Happiness: Rising from Despair and Turning Away from AnxietyConclusion