Journal 9 December 2000

Reflections on Psychodrama and Buddhist Practice

Abstract: The author asserts that there are several similarities and complementary elements between the psychodrama method and the Buddhist practice of meditation. He suggests that, while the two cultures appear completely different, they share several underlying values and attitudes. Among the similarities is the atmosphere of openness and acceptance required by both psychodrama and meditation and a recognition of the healing powers of consciousness. Psychodrama and meditation are mutually supportive practices that increase sensitivity and help to develop deeper understanding of life.

A Psychodramatist in the Classroom

Abstract: A teacher uses her experience as a psychodrama trainee to introduce several principles and practices into the classroom that promote the development of every student's identity. She contrasts this developmental approach to education with two outdated models still prevalent in Australian schools. She recognizes the contribution of three eminent educators from the 20th century, namely, Leila Berg, Sylvia Ashton-Warner and Paulo Freire, whose work inspired her own teaching practices.

Ryan and the Yellow Bike: Using Psychodrama in Work with Autistic Children

Abstract: The author describes a revolutionary Special Education programming technique designed for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The approach, known as 'Social Stories' and developed by Carol Gray in Michigan, USA, uses the exceptional visual ability of most children with ASD. A method called 'Comic Strip Conversations' is described where social concepts are described through detailed illustrations. The method helps children with ASD learn about and understand complex social interactions and relationships and to express themselves and their emotions.

The Use of Role Theory in Developing Mental Health Workers

Abstract: The author describes her use of role theory in the training of mental health support workers. Role theory helps her maintain positive communication with students and develop a better appreciation of their deeper issues. A focus on the students' psychodramatic roles helps her understand their performance as students and mental health support workers and promotes greater role development in the students.

Role Training with Men who Sexually Offend

Abstract: The paper describes the work of SAFE therapists in role training with men who sexually offend. Role training enables men who sexually offend to empathize with their victims through psychodrama tools such as doubling, mirroring and role-reversal. The ultimate aim of role training is to help male sexual offenders exit future high-risk situations.

The Nacissistic Role System; A New Concept of Systemic Role Theory

Abstract: The paper addresses the issue of narcissism from the perspective of psychodrama. It describes a new concept of systemic role theory called the Narcissistic Role System. It suggests that the Narcissistic Role has its own developmental trajectory and structure, independent from that of normal self-development. The treatment of the narcissistic role system for severely ill people is illustrated through a description of some clinical cases.

Phenomenology and Role Dynamics

Abstract: The author reflects on the relationship between phenomenology and role dynamics. He argues that psychodramatic role-analysis focuses more on direct relationships without contradicting the reality, importance and power of social systems. Two examples are used to demonstrate the benefits of role dynamic analysis.

Roles for Constructive Communication and Conflict Resolution

Abstract: The author describes a system of eight roles that may be applied in constructive communication and conflict resolution. The roles range from 'Courageous Adventurer' to 'Naive Receptive Enquirer'. A psychodramatic case study demonstrates how the eight roles facilitate the flow of communication and help in resolving conflicts.

Role-Reversal: Personal and Political Implications

Abstract: The paper explores the personal, social, and political implications of the psychodrama technique known as role reversal. The issue is discussed with reference to a role reversal vignette between a father and daughter that occurred in a personal development group for women. Several ideas relevant to the analysis of the relationship between the two protagonists in a role reversal are examined. The similarities between French feminist Julia Kristeva's three stages of the feminist struggle for equality and J. L. Moreno's stages of personality development are also discussed.

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