Treating Victims of Torture and Violence: Theoretical Cross-Cultural, and Clinical Implications

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Overview

Torture is among the most disturbing and psychologically devastating of human behaviors. It dehumanizes its victims, leaving them with serious and lasting psychological wounds. Like other psychological trauma, torture frequently leaves in its wake denial and silence among both perpetrators and their victims. This communicative void creates a public and mental block that can make treatment of torture survivors very difficult.

Treating Victims of Torture and Violence is the definitive manual for therapists treating victims of torture, prisoners of war, and casualties of forced migration. Divided into five sections dealing with basic concepts of torture—violence and aggression, the torture syndrome, psychotherapeutic treatment, the cultural psychology of torture syndrome, and cultural psychological treatment— Treating Victims of Torture and Violence employs both classic psychoanalytic and cognitive- behavioral methods. Realizing that torture victims are frequently from different cultures than those of their therapists, Peter Elsass provides in-depth aid to therapists dealing with a multicultural clientele.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
A manual for therapists treating victims of torture, prisoners of war, and casualties of forced migration, employing both classic psychoanalytic and cognitive-behavioral methods. Material is divided into five sections dealing with violence and aggression, the torture syndrome, psychotherapeutic treatment, the cultural psychology of torture syndrome, and cultural psychological treatment. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814722015
  • Publisher: New York University Press
  • Publication date: 8/3/2012
  • Series: Torture and Violence Victims Series
  • Pages: 216
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.63 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter Elsass is Professor of Clinical Psychology at the University of Copenhagen and the author of Strategies for Survival: The Psychology of Cultural Resilience in Ethnic Minorities, also available from NYU Press.

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Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction 1
1 Torture, Violence, and Aggression: Scientific Difficulties in Containing the "Absolute Evil" 10
2 The Torture Syndrome: A Diagnostic Description of the Trauma-Provoked Condition and a Psychodynamic Understanding of the "Unbearable-Helplessness" 29
3 Psychotherapeutic Treatment: The Supportive Attitude and the Combination of Psychoanalytic and Cognitive Ways of Thinking 60
4 The Cultural Psychology of the Torture Syndrome: A Distinction between What Is Universal and What Is Culture-Bound 91
5 Cultural-Psychological Treatment: Examples of Psychotherapy Showing Respect for Foreign Cultures 113
6 Postscript: The Torture Survivor's Perspective: A Follow-Up Examination Combining Supervision with Research 142
Appendix 162
References 177
Subject Index 197
About the Author 199
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