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Terror Within and Without
Attachment and Disintegration - Clinical Work on the Edge
As clinicians we want to further our understanding of work with adult clients who have experienced massive and cumulative psychic trauma to which there is no possible adaptive response strategy. This monograph of the 2008 John Bowlby Memorial Conference brings together papers by leading contributors to the field of attachment and trauma that explore the means by which individuals struggle to cope with exposure to war zones, both large scale conflicts and societal breakdown, and the domestic war zones where adults and children experience violence and sexual abuse. These papers seek to further our understanding of the intergenerational transmission of experiences of trauma, as in the examples of the Holocaust and slavery. In times where talk of terror is everywhere, psychotherapists offer a clinical perspective on terror which may translate to the world at large. Papers by Professor Arietta Slade, Shoshi Asheri, Dr. Joseph Schwartz, Adah Sachs, Dick Blackwell and Judith Erskine explore topics such as: experiences of terror states in the consulting room; the multiple survival strategies engaged by people struggling to cope with exposure to relational and environmental war zones; the intergenerational transmission of trauma and terror within an historical and cultural framework; the connection between therapists' own experiences of terror and those of their clients; how therapists may appropriately adapt their approach to include those who have been seen as 'unanalysable'; how the non-verbal aspects of a terrorised person's experience can be safely and effectively worked with therapeutically and the implications for the therapeutic frame and technique; and how we might more adequately provide support and legitimacy within the profession for work 'on the edge'.
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