Second Thoughts on the Theory and Practice of the Milan Approach to Family Therapy

Second Thoughts on the Theory and Practice of the Milan Approach to Family Therapy

Second Thoughts on the Theory and Practice of the Milan Approach to Family Therapy

Second Thoughts on the Theory and Practice of the Milan Approach to Family Therapy

Synopsis

Second Thoughts on the Theory and Practice of the Milan Approach to Family Therapy is a full discussion of the way the original techniques of the Milan Approach have been affected by current thinking in the family therapy field. Hypothesizing, neutrality and circularity, for example, are all redefined in response to the challenge of new clinical problems, such as child abuse, and new thinking from areas such as linguistics and feminine. The authors refer back to their original article Working With the Milan Method: 20 Questions in order to chart the changes which have taken place over the last ten years and, similarly, richly illustrate the present work with clinical examples.

Excerpt

We published Working with the Milan Method: Twenty Questions in 1983 as a response to the way the Milan Approach had been described and discussed up to that time. Selvini et al attempted to clarify the major components which under-pinned the approach and described them in their paper, 'Hypothesizing-Circularity- Neutrality' (1980). Because we were being confronted with something new, we needed to differentiate these components and make them relevant and manageable for ourselves, as family therapists offering treatment to families. Looking back, we can see how at that time we were preoccupied with linking our systemic thinking to useful family therapy techniques.

We have discovered that people starting out as therapists use Working with the Milan Method: Twenty Questions as an introduction to the basic ideas behind the Milan Approach and as a handbook of therapy skills. It has served as a set of questions and explanations which prompt further questions and which people continue to ask us. But we now answer those questions in a different way: we have inevitably been affected by the feedback created by answering those 'Twenty Questions', and the questions family therapists asked of us now represent different preoccupations . . .

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