chapter  3
4 Pages

Part 3 Beyond the erapy Room

Th e section begins with a compelling and hopeful story by Swedish therapist Judit Wagner, who illustrates how, when faced with serious and diffi cult social problems such as incarceration, her collaborative-refl ecting dialogue practice with prisoners and warders off ers rich potential. As Sheila McNamee pointed out when she read this chapter, the practice “embodies the ethic of collaborative work: that we are not too quick to impose our values, our understandings, or our judgments on others.” Next Haarakangas and colleagues off er a provocative alternative-a network-language-based approach-to the institutional practices of psychiatry in Finland with fi rstepisode and chronic psychosis. Th e effi cacy of their approach, which is gaining widespread recognition around the world, is documented by their clients’ voices, and it has been statistically documented through two-, fi ve-, and 8-year follow-up studies. In the next two chapters by Sylvia London and Irma Rodríguez-Jazcilevich and by Sylvia London and Margarita Tarragona,

the authors share how they faced the challenge of taking their collaborative therapy practices and training out of their familiar therapist-classroom settings in Mexico City and into a school and a psychiatric hospital, respectively. Most noticeable is the contrast of the challenge in each setting. In the school, it was a matter of the authors’ being blinded by the “familiar” and how the associated “knowing” and “assuming” got them into trouble. In the psychiatric hospital it was a matter of “unfamiliar” territory as they lost and then regained their ability to live with uncertainty. In “Women at a Turning Point,” Feinsliver, Murphy, and Anderson’s story testifi es to the power of an environment that invites and encourages collaborative relationships and generative conversations. Women once “categorized” as “substance abusers” and “victims of domestic violence” emerged and fl ourished as they realized “unidentifi ed” strengths, “untapped” selfagency, and a newfound “sense of community.” And, fi nally, Klaus G. Deissler from Germany talks about how a one-week visit to Cuba surprisingly turned into a training/consultation program that is now in its seventh year. He brings the voices of his Cuban colleagues to the pages to describe their experience of the program, the eff ect on their work, and its compatibility with their national ideology.