The Past and Future of Body Psychotherapy
As one of the editors of the (soon to be published) Handbook of Body Psychotherapy (which is being translated and re-edited from the German, and includes contributions from more than 80 Body Psychotherapists, many of them the elders of the discipline), Michael has a good overview of the diversity and the development of the approach over the decades.
He is suggesting that you bring your own questions and dilemmas about the work, and he will try to put them into context and help you explore them. Based on past experience of what participants find most helpful, Michael prefers to work in an experiential way, using examples from your practice. As the topic is quite abstract, he will aim towards keeping the exploration connected to your everyday work using roleplays of charged moments with clients.
Rather than narrowing the theme of the workshop down to one particular topic, Michael will introduce theory as appropriate to what the group brings, but some of the key developments in the field - which we might focus on - are:
- different styles of Body Psychotherapy (breaking through vs melting the armour; cathartic vs containing; challenging vs supportive; working ‘alongside’ the client vs ‘opposite’)
- the shadow aspects of the Body Psychotherapy tradition
- the wounds, potential and pathologies of character structure theory
- the conundrum of touch
- the paradoxical nature of embodiment
- the ‘medical model’ in Body Psychotherapy
- re-integration of the psychoanalytic and Body Psychotherapy traditions
- the Body Psychotherapist as an enemy of the client’s ego
- embodied transference and countertransference
- the Relational Turn in Body Psychotherapy
- the multiplicity of relational modalities as it applies to Body Psychotherapy