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Emotional retreat and social exclusion: towards biographical methods in professional training

Chamberlayne, Prue (2004). Emotional retreat and social exclusion: towards biographical methods in professional training. Journal of Social Work Practice, 18(3) pp. 337–350.

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This article argues the relevance of biographical case study methods as a tool for professional practice. The case of Laura, manager of a small hostel for homeless people, shows hidden reserves of emotional understanidng which Laura finds too risky to bring into play. Analysis of the structure of the interview shows the enactment and lowering of Laura's defences in interaction with the interviewer. The article argues for support and supervision to allow professionals to recognise and use their capacities for emotional thinking, and that this kind of 'experiential truth' is key both for users and professionals in tackling social exclusion. Methodological parallels between biographical methods and effective training are also drawn through discussion of responses to a training video based on a fictionalised version of a critical incident from this interview.

Item Type: Journal Article
Copyright Holders: 2004 GAPS
ISSN: 1465-3885
Keywords: biographic narrative interpretive method; interview structure; homelessness; boundaries; emotional thinking; reflective space and support
Academic Unit/Department: Health and Social Care
Item ID: 8795
Depositing User: Caroline Holland
Date Deposited: 25 Jul 2007
Last Modified: 05 Jul 2011 16:13
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