Client Socialization: The Achilles' Heel of the Helping Professions

By James A. Jones; Abraham Alcabes | Go to book overview

Chapter Seven
Transfer of Authority
Between Strangers

The Socialization Model of practice we have presented in this book was initially conceived as a theoretical model useful in explaining persistent problems encountered in social work. These problems included such phenomena as high drop-out rates, client resistance to help, and failure to resolve the problems of clients. It is obvious that these problems also arise in the other helping professions such as medicine, law and education.

All professions have the same Achilles' heel as social work. Medicine, law, education, religion, and other professions are all confronted with the need to gain legitimacy for the use of their technology from each help-seeker. Since each of these professions functions within our democratic value system, they must obtain that legitimation without coercion or seduction. Thus, all professions must go through a process with help-seekers that includes the phases (applicant, novitiate, client) described in this book. Otherwise, their efforts to help people solve their problems will be doomed to fail.

The Socialization Model, which describes how authority is transferred between strangers is also applicable to other fields where there are dyads of help-seekers and service-providers: voters and politicians, enlisted men and officers, and teenagers

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Client Socialization: The Achilles' Heel of the Helping Professions
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Copyright Acknowledgments v
  • Contents ix
  • Acknowledgments xv
  • Chapter Three - Not Every Client is a Client 43
  • Chapter Four - Applicant Phase: Defining the Problem 67
  • Chapter Five - Novitiate Phase: Legitimizing the Professional 99
  • Chapter Seven - Transfer of Authority Between Strangers 149
  • Appendix Socialization Questionnaire 157
  • References 163
  • Index 173
  • About the Authors *
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