Exchanging Voices: A Collaborative Approach to Family Therapy

By Lynn Hoffman | Go to book overview

CHAPTER THREE
The shift to postmodernism

T owards the end of the 1980s, I was beginning to criticize the entire systems model, start to finish. "Constructing Reality: An Art of Lenses" was the result. I had much support from Harry Goolishian and Harlene Anderson, with whom I checked in from time to time. Harry had never really been a systemically oriented person anyway, and his scepticism about the cybernetic model continued to deepen and support mine.

Harry and Harlene were also beginning to question constructivism. Harry pointed out that this view was basically tied in with the biology of cognition and was extremely skull-bound. I thought he was right; examined closely, these ideas had very little to do with what happened in therapy from a relational point of view. For a while, along with Harry Goolishian and Lee Winderman ( 1988), I had tried to counteract this problem by putting the word "social" in front of constructivism. Then it became obvious that this misrepresented the constructivist position. The nervous system was portrayed by constructivists as "informationally closed" even though it was open from the standpoint of material exchanges with the environment. I had earlier used the image of separate bathy-

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Exchanging Voices: A Collaborative Approach to Family Therapy
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Other Titles in the Systemic Thinking and Practice Series ii
  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Editors' Foreword vii
  • Foreword ix
  • Introduction 1
  • Chapter One - The Case Against Power and Control 5
  • Chapter Two - Joining Theory to Practice 57
  • Chapter Three - The Shift to Postmodernism 81
  • Chapter Four - Definitions for Simple Folk 103
  • Chapter Five - A Reflexive Stance 111
  • Chapter Six - Kitchen Talk 135
  • Chapter Seven - Trying to Write a Postmodern Text 163
  • Conclusion 203
  • Postscript 206
  • References 211
  • Index 220
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