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Aiello, T. (2012). What the Children Said: Children's Narrative Constructions of the Events of 9/11 in Psychotherapy. J. Infant Child Adolesc. Psychother., 11(1):32-38.

(2012). Journal of Infant, Child & Adolescent Psychotherapy, 11(1):32-38

What the Children Said: Children's Narrative Constructions of the Events of 9/11 in Psychotherapy

Theresa Aiello

This article is based on a study of children's narrative constructions of the events of September 11 as told to their psychotherapists. Twenty psychoanalytically oriented child therapists were interviewed for case vignettes illustrating how children narrated their responses to the attacks on the World Trade Center. The therapists presented 45 different cases, some of which are discussed here. The narratives included accounts that were verbal or utilized symbolic play content or enactments and, drawings as part of play therapy. The vignettes are discussed utilizing narrative theories, narratology, and psychoanalytic and trauma perspectives. These cases reflected children who lost a parent, relative, or friend; were forced to relocate; children who witnessed the attacks personally or on television; and children who became symptomatic after the attacks. Therapists interviewed worked in school settings, clinics, or in private practice.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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