Understanding the Self-Help Organization: Frameworks and Findings

Overview

This volume provides comprehensive coverage of self-help organizations, which in the United States alone involve over seven million people, from small local groups to major national organizations such as Alcoholics Anonymous.

The focus is on three critical areas: public policy and self-help; participation, particularly by minorities, in self-help; and various frameworks which contribute to understanding self-help. The book concludes with six ...

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Overview

This volume provides comprehensive coverage of self-help organizations, which in the United States alone involve over seven million people, from small local groups to major national organizations such as Alcoholics Anonymous.

The focus is on three critical areas: public policy and self-help; participation, particularly by minorities, in self-help; and various frameworks which contribute to understanding self-help. The book concludes with six chapters of major findings and case studies.

The book contains all black-and-white illustrations.

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Editorial Reviews

Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Audrey K. Gordon, PhD (University of Illinois at Chicago)
Description: This book focuses attention on four important areas in the field of self-help: public policy; explanatory frameworks; participation in self-help of diverse populations; and an accumulation of important findings about self-help. Its intent is to offer original insights on self-help.
Purpose: The purpose is to stimulate further identification of areas in which knowledge needs to be developed in the field of self-help. The reader is encouraged by the editor "to read deeply and critically" keeping in mind the possibility of contributing to the next stage of maturity in the self-help field. The book covers new ground in self-help that has not been addressed in a systematic fashion before; however, the four areas identified in the description seem more of a structural imposition on the articles written by the various authors than a well-planned heuristic framework. This probably says as much about the organization and maturity of the discipline as it does about the book, a developmental issue the editor readily acknowledges.
Audience: This target audience for the book is professionals in the field of self-help involved in research or policy-making.
Features: About half the articles have tables and graphs varying in degrees of clarity and usefulness. One of the most helpful features of the book is the extensive and current references cited after each article. The presentation of the book is straightforward with an uncluttered typeface and chapter organization.
Assessment: This book offers useful insights into the current state of research and conceptual models in the field of self-help. There are few books available with this specific focus. The reader may be surprised at the diversity of self-help groups and how the paradigms for self-help differ within the field. The book is suitable for academic libraries and self-help professionals, but is not oriented to the consumer of self-help services or the lay public.
Audrey K. Gordon
This book focuses attention on four important areas in the field of self-help: public policy; explanatory frameworks; participation in self-help of diverse populations; and an accumulation of important findings about self-help. Its intent is to offer original insights on self-help. The purpose is to stimulate further identification of areas in which knowledge needs to be developed in the field of self-help. The reader is encouraged by the editor ""to read deeply and critically"" keeping in mind the possibility of contributing to the next stage of maturity in the self-help field. The book covers new ground in self-help that has not been addressed in a systematic fashion before; however, the four areas identified in the description seem more of a structural imposition on the articles written by the various authors than a well-planned heuristic framework. This probably says as much about the organization and maturity of the discipline as it does about the book, a developmental issue the editor readily acknowledges. This target audience for the book is professionals in the field of self-help involved in research or policy-making. About half the articles have tables and graphs varying in degrees of clarity and usefulness. One of the most helpful features of the book is the extensive and current references cited after each article. The presentation of the book is straightforward with an uncluttered typeface and chapter organization. This book offers useful insights into the current state of research and conceptual models in the field of self-help. There are few books available with this specific focus. The reader may be surprised at the diversity of self-help groups and how the paradigms forself-help differ within the field. The book is suitable for academic libraries and self-help professionals, but is not oriented to the consumer of self-help services or the lay public.

3 Stars from Doody
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780803954885
  • Publisher: SAGE Publications
  • Publication date: 8/17/1994
  • Pages: 360

Table of Contents

Preface - Thomas J Powell
Some Comments on Knowledge Development in the Self-Help Field
PART ONE: POLICY FRAMEWORKS AND FINDINGS
Self-Help Research and Policy Issues - Thomas J Powell
Agency Involvement with Self-Help Programs and Quality of Mental Health Services for Older Adults - Thomas J Powell
PART TWO: MAJORITY AND MINORITY PARTICIPATION FRAMEWORKS AND FINDINGS
Problems in Assessing Prevalence and Membership Characteristics of Self-Help Group Participants - Morton A Lieberman and Lonnie R Snowden
African-American Participation in Self-Help Groups - Lonnie R Snowden and Morton A Lieberman
Researching Mutual Help Group Participation in a Segregated Society - Keith Humphreys and Michael D Woods
Individual, Group Context, and Individual-Group Fit Predictors of Self-Help Group Attendance - Douglas A Luke, Linda Roberts and Julian Rappaport
PART THREE: EXPLANATORY FRAMEWORKS
Narrative Studies, Personal Studies, and Identity Transformation in the Mutual Help Context - Julian Rappaport
Moving Beyond the Individual Level of Analysis in Mutual-Help Group Research - Kenneth I Maton
An Ecological Paradigm
Consumer Roles in Self-Help Group Research - Caroline L Kaufmann
The Naturalistic Paradigm as an Approach to Research with Mutual Help Groups - Mellen Kennedy, Keith Humphreys and Thomasina Borkman
PART FOUR: FINDINGS
The Self-Help Clearinghouse - Gregory Meissen and Mary Warren
A New Development in Action Research for Community Psychology
Self-Help for Sickle Cell Disease in African American Communities - Kermit B Nash and Kathryn D Kramer
Identifying the Experiential Knowledge Developed within a Self-Help Group - Marsha A Schubert and Thomasina Borkman
Twelve Steps for Everyone? Lesbians in Al-Anon - Christine L Saulnier
Understanding Self-Help Groups - J B Kingree and R Barry Ruback
Self-Help Groups for Families with Mental Illness or Alcoholism - Linda Farris Kurtz
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