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Polyvagal Theory 1: Basic principles (phylogeny, neuroception, dissolution, social engagement system)

Polyvagal Theory 1: Basic principles (phylogeny, neuroception, dissolution, social engagement system)

What if many of your troubles could be explained by an automatic reaction in your body to what’s happening around you? what if an understanding of several mental and emotional disorders, ranging from autism to panic attacks, lay in a new theoretical approach of how the nervous system integrates and regulates bodily and psychological processes? Stephen W. Porges, Ph.D., thinks it could be so. Dr. Porges, professor of psychiatry at the University of Illinois, Chicago, and director for that institution’s Brain-Body Center, has spent much of his life searching for clues to the way the brain operates, and has developed what he has termed Polyvagal Theory.
The Polyvagal Theory is a study of the evolution of the human nervous system and the origins of brain structures, and it assumes that more of our social behavious and emotional disorders and biological – that is, they are ‘hard wired’ into us – than we usually think. Based on the theory, Porges and his colleagues have developed treatment techniques that can help people communicate better and relate beter to others.
Areas of Interest / Categories: Polyvagal Theory, STARTTS 2009

STARTTS 2009

An Interview with Dr Sue Carter on Oxitocin and Social Monogamy

Dr Sue Carter is a neuroscientist and Co-Director of the

An Interview with Amber Gray on Dance Movement Therapy and Social Engagement.

Movement is a way of organising experience and a way of facilitating healing in traumatised individuals and communities.  Amber Gray is a dance/movement therapist, working with the ways that trauma invades the body and our capacity to move in our worlds.

Refugee Women; War, Rape and Sexual Abuse (in Conversation)

Refugee women and their dependent children account for 80 per cent of the world’s refugees. Refugee women are arrested, abducted, imprisoned, persecuted, tortured, raped, sexually abused and sold for prostitution. Rape and sexual abuse is the most common form of systematized torture used against women, which are used as weapons of war.  

Mental Health, Conflict Management and Social Action (2) (in Conversation)

Dr Dinka Corkalo Biruski discusses a capacity building program that aimed to empower key community figures to become leaders of change. The approach was based on community psychosocial work, conflict management and social action in post-conflict divided communities.

Sekai Holland in conversation with Sejla Tukelija

Voices of Trauma: on contextual thinking of complex posttraumatic damage (In conversation)

Although modern psychiatry, based on the science of the western world, has many universal values, serious gaps and problems can arise when practised in situations where helpers and victims are of different cultural backgrounds.

Mental Health, Conflict Management and Social Action (1) (In Conversation)

Dr Dean Ajdukovic discusses a capacity building program that aimed to empower key community figures to become leaders of change. The approach was based on community psychosocial work, conflict management and social action in post-conflict divided communities. The program helped the participants identify barriers to social reconstruction in their respective communities, relate to suffering of victims on both sides of the conflict, and empower them to initiate and lead a community social action, thus facilitating the “bottom up” approach to building stability and peace.