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Monzo, B. (2011). Core Principles of Assessment and Therapeutic Communication: Towards the Promotion of Child and Family Wellbeing, by Ruth Schmidt Neven, 2010, Routledge.. Cpl. Fam. Psychoanal., 1(1):145-146.
   

(2011). Couple and Family Psychoanalysis, 1(1):145-146

Core Principles of Assessment and Therapeutic Communication: Towards the Promotion of Child and Family Wellbeing, by Ruth Schmidt Neven, 2010, Routledge.

Review by:
Bob Monzo

This book is written for professionals working with children, parents, and families primarily in non-clinical settings, but others working in a wide range of statutory services will benefit from the ideas presented here. In particular, the case examples are interesting and clearly illustrative of relevant principles. Some are quite moving. They also speak to the myriad of frustrations inherent across the range of work settings included here.

In setting out her ‘core principles of assessment and therapeutic communication’, the author certainly achieves her aim of providing a conceptual framework as a foundation for child and family professionals in their everyday practice. She argues convincingly for time-limited therapeutic work, and that a deeper understanding of the child and family's emotional experience is not the sole preserve of long-term therapy or exclusive to a clinical setting.

Ruth Schmidt Neven is a child psychotherapist, psychologist, and researcher, trained at the Tavistock Clinic, London, and now Director of the Centre for Child and Family Development in Melbourne. Her approach has resonances in Tavistock courses such as ‘Therapeutic Communication with Children’, and ‘Emotional Aspects of Learning and Teaching’, as well as the Under Fives Counselling Service, all of which espouse similar methods and values as those described here.

Part One emphasises understanding the meaning of the child's behaviour in his/her inner world as opposed to pathologising it.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

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