Will Sherwin is producing an internet radio show, BANTR Radio, conversing with narrative therapists and community workers around the world.
For the first episode, Will compiled a list of quotations that have been helpful in his work. He discussed these quotations with BANTR co-organizer and co-instructor, Julia Wallace, LCSW, a narrative therapist in private practice in San Francisco. For more information on Julia Wallace go to juliawallace.com
1) “People are profoundly influenced by the discourses around them.” — AATBS Study Guide for 2010 MFT licensing exam.
2) ” …the postmodern argument is not against the various schools of therapy, only against their posture of authoritative truth.” — Kenneth Gergen
3) “Therapy tends to privilege the individual rather than the set of relationships in which that individual lives.” — Kenneth Gergen
4) “Where there is power, there is resistance.” — Michel Foucault
5) “The narrative approach is characterized by an unshakable belief in the incomplete nature of all oppressions.” — John Winslade and Lorraine Hedtke, Narrative Therapy in Practice: The archaeology of hope.
6) “All of us are weirdly-abled.” — Stephen Madigan and David Epston
What is the theory of change from this narrative perspective? One of my responses would be that the rich development of a subordinate storyline provides a foundation for people to address the problems and predicaments of their life. It makes it possible to engage in actions that are healing in response to the traumas of their past. It is this rich story development that provides that foundation. People become aware of some actions they could take that would be more in harmony with what they’re learning about what’s important to them, about what they give value to, and about what they intend for their life.
It’s through this rich story development that some of these other conclusions become more visible and become more influential in the shaping life. There’s quite a focus on establishing a context in which people are able to give voice to what it is they do give value to that’s been continuous through their live; that’s represented in a range of responses to their predicaments. And what it is that people intend for their lives. It’s the rich development of these conclusions about one’s intentions and what one gives value to that provides a wonderful foundation for people to proceed with their life. Suddenly people become aware of a whole range of options that would be in harmony with what they give value to and what they intend for their life.
— Michael White, Trauma and Narrative Therapy Part 1, 27 min.
8) “. . . restoring the dignity and honor of young people and their families.”
“. . . shame, indignity, and dishonor dissolve in rich stories.”
— David Epston