Psychoanalytic Social Work: Practice, Foundations, Methods

Author(s) : Michael Gunter, Author(s) : George Bruns, Translator : Harriet Hasenclever

Psychoanalytic Social Work: Practice, Foundations, Methods

Book Details

  • Publisher : Karnac Books
  • Published : March 2013
  • Cover : Paperback
  • Pages : 240
  • Category :
    Psychoanalysis
  • Catalogue No : 32922
  • ISBN 13 : 9781780490908
  • ISBN 10 : 1780490909

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This book represents the first systematic account of the theory and practice of psychoanalytical social work. For students and those entering the field of social work who are interested in psychoanalytical social work it offers an overview of the diverse fields of practice of psychoanalytical social work and combines this with a description of its history, relation to other areas of social work and relevant psychoanalytical theories. Equally, it addresses practising social workers, social educationalists, psychiatrists or psychotherapists offering comprehensive insight into this particular form of social work for those working in centres for counselling or early intervention or in social paediatrics.

The authors have taken pains to make descriptions as clear and approachable as possible for those who may not be familiar with psychoanalytical concepts, and have therefore included a chapter outlining the psychoanalytical theories of particular relevance to social work and also around twenty definitions of important psychoanalytical concepts, in which the relevance for the practice of social work is taken into particular account. The book is rounded off with a contribution by colleagues in the Association for Psychoanalytical Social Work in Tübingen/Rottenburg (Germany), bringing the practice of psychoanalytical social work to life in the form of case studies.

Reviews and Endorsements

'This accessible, timely and much needed book comprehensively explores the background and basis of psychoanalytic social work and illustrates how the application of psychoanalytic concepts and principles may be utilised in the diverse settings of social work. Importantly the authors address countertransference, and the significance of recognising the negative countertransference that allows for a working relationship with a client whatever the area of work. Lively, pertinent examples reveal the value of application of psychoanalytic core concepts in relation to individual work, as well as to groups, teams, institutions and supervision. An essential text for generic, forensic social work and probation.'
- Richard Davies, Psychoanalytic Psychotherapist, MBAP BSc MA CQSW

'Although psychotherapists and psychoanalysts undertake important work with patients in private consulting rooms, the intensity and regularity of sessions keeps most analytical clinicians imprisoned, and prevents us from making home visits, or ensuring that our patients have enough food to eat, or a safe environment in which to live, as well as access to crucial public services. Thank goodness we can all enjoy the Herculean contributions of our colleagues in the field of social work. For too many decades, however, many mental health professionals have come to regard social work predominantly as an entry point to psychoanalytical training, rather than as an indispensable profession in its own right. In this highly readable and deeply important book our distinguished German colleagues Professor Michael Günter and Dr Georg Jürgen Bruns provide a rich investigation of the ways in which social work and psychoanalysis can inform and enhance one another with generosity and reciprocity. Tracing the key moments in the history of psychoanalytical social work, the authors then explore how the contemporary marriage of social work and psychodynamic practice may be one of deep enrichment for all concerned. I recommend this book as essential reading for anyone who has ever worked in a multidisciplinary team or in a public sector mental health institution.'
- Professor Brett Kahr, Senior Clinical Research in Psychotherapy and Mental Health at the Centre for Child Mental Health in London, and Honorary Visiting Professor, School of Arts, University of Roehampton, and Trustee of the Freud Museum

'Here is no doubt a great source of insight and inspiration for the entire multidisciplinary community working in the social services and in child care, in residential units and outreach projects. Above all, this book provides robust theoretical arguments and welcome reassurances for those who have engaged themselves with chronically disturbed children and youths and their families and who are frustrated by the pressures towards cost effective, empirically validated short-term care programmes. The excellent texts and case vignettes give a vivid account of the scope and vigour of psychoanalytic social work in Germany today - its origins, present forms of practice and supervision.'
- Prof. Dr R. du Bois, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, Stuttgart

About the Author(s)

Michael Günter is professor for child and adolescent psychiatry and medical director in the Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy for Children and Adolescents at the University of Tübingen. He is a child and adolescent psychiatrist and psychoanalyst for adults, children and adolescents and training analyst (DPV/IPA). In addition, he edits the journal Kinderanalyse.

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George Bruns is a psychoanalyst, neurologist, and psychiatrist. He was Chairman of the German Psychoanalytical Association between 2002 and 2004 and is currently Professor of Medical Sociology at the University of Bremen.

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