Women in Context: Toward a Feminist Reconstruction of Psychotherapy / Edition 1

Women in Context: Toward a Feminist Reconstruction of Psychotherapy / Edition 1

by Marsha Pravder Mirkin
     
 


Challenging some of our most deeply held assumptions about mental health care, Women in Context explores the ways psychotherapy services for women are influenced by the larger therapy system and the sociopolitical context in which we live. The volume provides a comprehensive and insightful examination of factors that affect women's mental health,See more details below

Overview


Challenging some of our most deeply held assumptions about mental health care, Women in Context explores the ways psychotherapy services for women are influenced by the larger therapy system and the sociopolitical context in which we live. The volume provides a comprehensive and insightful examination of factors that affect women's mental health, demonstrates the inadequacy of traditional psychotherapeutic assumptions, and offers new approaches for addressing women's experiences.
Drawn from the work of noted therapists from both individual and family disciplines, the book begins with an overview of the themes that define its scope, namely, women within the larger context of the service delivery system, and the weaving together of gender, race, class, and sexual life style. The second section examines psychotherapy given a sociopolitical understanding of women's life cycle issues. Chapters discuss the influence of societal norms and stereotypes on the ways girls experience adolescence, as well as on marginalized and silenced women including lesbians, single heterosexuals, bisexual women, stepmothers, and older women.
Enlightening chapters on women's medical concerns show that many women enter therapy in response to the dual-edged emotional consequences of dealing with illness and with the health care system itself. The book discusses psychotherapeutic approaches to women's health concerns, the pathologizing of normal female life cycle events, and the personal and familial impact of some feared illnesses. Chapters also examine whether new reproductive technologies are truly in the service of women, ways to break the silence surrounding the spread of AIDS among women, and reasons for the lack of research on menopause.
The final section of the book illuminates the impact of governmental policies and of deeply imbued belief systems on women's mental health concerns. Violence, poverty, homelessness, teenage pregnancy, and women in the workplace are among the issues explored from a societal perspective. Here, chapters illustrate the application of ideas presented in the text by offering therapeutic insights and describing established programs that are dealing with some of these problems. Difficulties women encounter in the workplace and in traditionally male-dominated institutions are also covered. Concluding with a probing look at one therapist's work with a female client, the book lays the groundwork for the creation of a new model of psychotherapy--a model that will be more compatible with the actual experiences of women's lives.
Written in a straightforward, personal style and eschewing technical jargon, this major new work is enlightening reading for all mental health professionals who work with women. Adroitly addressing a range of timely and critical topics, the book will be valued by those who specialize in women's studies and students from a broad range of academic disciplines.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780898620955
Publisher:
Guilford Publications, Inc.
Publication date:
06/24/1994
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
502
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.26(h) x 1.18(d)

Table of Contents

Introduction1
1Service Delivery Systems and Women: The Construction of Conflict9
2The Interweaving of Gender, Class, and Race in Family Therapy25
3The Impact of Misogyny and Homophobia on Therapy with Women48
4Female Adolescence Revisited: Understanding Girls in Their Sociocultural Contexts77
5Women Growing Older: Partnerships for Change96
6Lesbian Families: A Cultural Perspective118
7Therapy with Bisexual Women: Working on the Edge of Emerging Cultural and Personal Identities149
8Single Heterosexual Women through the Life Cycle170
9Women in Stepfamilies: The Fairy Godmother, the Wicked Witch, and Cinderella Reconstructed188
10Keep Abreast: Women and Breast Cancer in Context217
11Working with Communities of Women at Risk for AIDS: A Chronicle237
12The Sociopolitical Contexts of Abortion256
13The Counter Revolution: Sex, Politics, and the New Reproductive Technologies284
14Over the Hill We Go: Women at Menopause310
15Diversity and Difference: Race and Feminist Psychotherapy333
16Violence against Women: Ramifications of Gender, Class, and Race Inequality352
17Poor Women: Making a Difference390
18Empowerment Work with Homeless Women408
19Women's Struggles in the Workplace: A Relational Model433
20It's A Question of Dollars and Cents: Prioritizing Economic Issues in Women's Treatment453
21Female Adolescents and Sexuality: A Look at Teen Sexual Behavior, Its Consequences, and the Pregnanacy Prevention Programs462
22Epilogue: The Maternal Presence in Psychotherapy482
Index492

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