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Witnessed dreaming? A history and review of the arts therapies: Dream, image, action and relation

Witnessed dreaming? A history and review of the arts therapies: Dream, image, action and relation

The presentation will examine the international emergence of the arts therapies and review current developments and research. This will include a discussion of the commonalities and differences between the main modalities of art, music, drama and dance therapy. Drawing on his recent publications ‘The Arts Therapies’ (Routledge 2005), ‘Drama As Therapy’ (Second Edition Routledge 2007), ‘Rethinking Childhood’ (Continuum 2009) and ‘Drama As Therapy Volume 2: Clinical Work and Research into Practice’ (Routledge 2010), Dr Jones will look at the ways in which twentieth century discoveries in fields such as experimental arts, psychoanalysis, psychotherapy and children’s play created questions about the relationship between therapeutic change and the arts which the arts therapies have begun to answer. 

Recent research in the separate modalities will be drawn on to offer insights into the therapeutic possibilities of the interaction between the arts, the unconscious and conscious and the ‘therapeutic triangle’ of client, therapist and artform. It will draw on arts therapist Maclagan’s (1989) use of the ‘slippery concepts’ of imagination, dream and fantasy to question cultural oppositions made between outside and inside, real and imaginary, literal and metaphorical. The presentation will: – provide insight into the emergence and nature of the arts therapies; – offer insights into contemporary research in the field; – propose that the arts therapies offer particular insights into psychotherapy’s relationship to cultural approaches to meaning. 

Reference:  Maclagan, D. (1989)  ‘Fantasy and the Figurative,’ in Gilroy, A. and Dalley, T. (eds) Pictures at an Exhibition: Selected Essays on Art and Art Therapy, London: Routledge

Areas of Interest / Categories: Dreams, Psychotherapy, WCP 2011

WCP 2011

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