In an old comic strip two toads, father and son, were talking to one another.
The younger toad asked his father, “Pop, what's the smartest creature on earth?”
Father toad responds, “Well… Let's see…. I know we're right up there…. It's either dolphins, toads, or chimps…. No! I think it goes toads, then chimps, then dolphins!”
“What about human beings?” asks the younger toad.
“Oh, yeah…can't leave them out, ” says Father. “They came up with the light bulb!”
“Why is that so great?” says Junior.
“Are you kidding? They attract bugs like you wouldn't believe” (Tribune Media Services, 1988).
We all see the world from our unique vantage point, and it's easy to see the way we do things as the only way.
Americans are particularly good at this. American family therapists were the original definers of family therapy. But as family therapy travels across the globe, it is changing to fit unique cultures and circumstances. The authors of this volume chronicle this change.
Few things are as universal as the importance of families. How one works with families, however, is shaped by cultural, economic, religious, social, and political constraints. This book chronicles the growth of family therapy-and sometimes the challenges that restrict growth-in a wide range of countries. We learn how family therapy permutations are evolving across the world.
This book can be read on several levels. On one, we learn about the history of family therapy across the globe. On another, we vicariously feel the enthusiasm of those forging this new profession. We learn that politics and repression are alive and well, and have their influence on both the price of bread and the family that buys it.
This book also stimulates self-reflection. When we learn about different ways of doing things-and of seeing the world-we remember how much we are imbedded in our own way of seeing and doing. This realization makes it harder to sleepwalk through a day.