1st Edition

Arts Therapies in International Practice Informed by Neuroscience and Research

Edited By Caroline Miller, Mariana Torkington Copyright 2022
    236 Pages 26 Color & 19 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    236 Pages 26 Color & 19 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    236 Pages 26 Color & 19 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

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    Arts Therapies in International Practice: Informed by Neuroscience and Research brings together practice and research in the arts therapies and in neuroscience. The authors are all arts therapists who have reviewed their practice through the lens of modern neuroscience. Neuroscience confirms the importance of embodiment, choice, and creativity in therapy with a range of clients. Arts therapies directly provide these.

    The authors demonstrate how the arts therapies can be adapted creatively to work in different social and ethnic communities, with different ages and with different states of health or ill health. Although there is diversity in their practice and country of practice, they reaffirm key concepts of the arts therapies, such as the importance of the therapeutic relationship, and the key role played by the arts modality with its effects on the brain and nervous system.

    This book will appeal to a wide readership, including arts therapists, expressive arts therapists, a range of other psychotherapists and counsellors, students and their teachers, and those interested in the neuroscience of human development.

    Part One: Setting the Scene. Introduction, Caroline Miller 1. Arts Therapies: Recent Advances, Caroline Miller Part Two: Arts Therapies in Practice 2. Metaphor and Implicit Memory (Jonah and the missing heart: A story of attachment and dramatherapy), Sarah Mann Shaw 3. Narradrama as a Three-Act Play: Transformation, Neurobiology, and Discovery, Pamela Dunne & Renda Dionne Madrigal 4. Dramatherapy with Adolescents in Malaysia: Be Vanitha Chandrasegaram 5. A Multimodal, Multitheoretical Arts-Psychotherapy Approach to Trauma and Depression, Agnès Desombiaux-Sigley 6. We are Here Together for A while: Art Therapy Initiatives within a Hospice Setting in Singapore, Kim Hau Pang 7. Imagination and Art Therapy: A Bridge to Transformation for Traumatised Clients, Mariana Torkington 8. Singing all Together in the CeleBRation Choir: A Music Therapist's Perspective on Community Singing for Adults who have Neurogenic Communication Difficulties, Alison Talmage 9. Music therapy for autistic children- responding to contemporary understandings with new research approaches, Daphne Rickson 10. In Circle: The Benefits of Dance as a Community Practice, Sian Palmer 11. Mind and Movement: Using the Universality of Neuroscience in Dance Movement Therapy, Verity Danbold Part Three: Reflections and Review 12. Reflections, Caroline Miller 13. Future Development, Caroline Miller and Mariana Torkington


    Caroline Miller, (NZ) MA Clinical Psychology, PGDip Clinical Psychology, BA English/Psychology, BPhil, PG Dip. Dramatherapy, graduated as a dramatherapist in 1991 and has worked as a dramatherapist and clinical psychologist in government services, non-government services, schools, mental health settings, and private practice. Her work has included school counselling, managing and setting up a district health board mental health service for children adolescents and their families, managing a programme for conduct disordered youth, working in schools for children (ages 5–21) with special needs, working with young sex offenders, and working in private practice with adults and young people with sexual abuse trauma, depression, anxiety, and other diagnosed mental health disorders. She has had an extensive supervision practice. She has supported many therapists to develop their writing for publication. Caroline was the inaugural co-director of the MA in arts therapy, a combined arts therapies programme at Whitecliffe College of Arts and Design in Auckland New Zealand. She continued in the position of co-director teaching and supervising master’s level dissertations. This was followed by guest lecturing and workshop invitations. She has presented at several conferences in Australasia and the United Kingdom. Caroline has published several articles and is the editor of two books Assessment and Outcomes in the Arts Therapies: A Person-Centred Approach (London, UK: Jessica Kingsley Publishers, 2014), and Arts Therapists in Multidisciplinary Settings: Working Together for Better Outcomes (London, UK: Jessica Kingsley Publishers, 2016).

    Mariana Torkington, (NZ) MA Arts Therapy (Clinical), AThR, ANZACATA, MNZAC, ACC Provider, is a registered arts therapist working and lecturing in Auckland and a published author in the arts therapies field. Mariana has worked as an arts therapist for government and non-government agencies and in private practice. She has specialised in working with children, adolescents and families in trauma and abuse recovery. Her special areas of interest include family work, learning disabilities, anxiety, and depression. Mariana is currently lecturing in the newly established Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy Programme at Auckland University of Technology.  Mariana spent her childhood and young adulthood living in Argentina and Brazil and speaks Spanish, Portuguese, and English.

    "The development in thinking and practice of neuroscience is exciting for a number of reasons, not the least because of its impact on the arts therapies. This book contains a treasure trove of writing encompassing the work of a variety of creative arts practitioners and is inspiring and uplifting. Music, art, movement and drama are combined in this unique text exploring the benefits of creative therapeutic work for a wide range of clients. The book also provides an opportunity to hear different voices from the global practices of these creative therapists, adding much to the discourse and practice development for colleagues in a variety of fields as well as students and those with lived-experience of the life-issues presented here."

    Dr Elizabeth Coombes FHEA FAMI. Therapydd Cerdd/Music Therapist, Uwch Ddarlithydd/Senior Lecturer, Arweinydd Rhaglen MA mewn Therapi Cerdd/Programme Leader MA Music Therapy, Rhoelwr Academaidd/Academic Manager, Prifysgol De Cymru/University of South Wales

    "The arts therapies are uniquely positioned to contribute significantly to the practical and experiential applications of recent developments in neuroscience to mental health. Arts therapists have long practiced with a deep understanding of the connection between mind and body. This volume is an eloquent contribution to this field and ensures that the experience and understanding of the arts therapists is heard and included. It is especially exciting to hear the stories and experiences of arts therapists who bring their experience from beyond the global north."

    Paula Kingwill, Dramatherapist, HPCSA reg. South Africa

    "An extraordinary culmination of innovative and captivating practice and insights from a diverse cross-section of international arts therapies practitioners and contexts. Each chapter sensitively considers the complexities of neuroscience, how emerging research is stimulating engagement with the arts and creativity across the lifespan, and how these implications are impacting informed practice. Those receiving arts therapies services remain the focal point and it is their engagement with the creative processes that breathe life into the discourse. Caroline Miller has again contributed a critical and sophisticated text that interweaves theory, research and neuroscience that is sure to ignite your imagination and progress the arts therapies in important ways."

    Ronald P.M.H. Lay, MA, AThR, ATR-BC, registered and credentialed art therapist, consultant, supervisor and program leader of the Masters in Art Therapy Program at LASALLE College of the Arts, Singapore

    "This very readable, enriching and enlightening book contains chapters from Arts Therapists who practice in a range of continents, with a wide variety of clients. Each writer provides an engaging case study to illustrate how a synthesis of theories from the arts, science and psychotherapy combined with humanity informs their approaches to therapy."

    Madeline Andersen-Warren, author, researcher and recently retired Dramatherapist, UK.

    "Many people imagine that the arts have a profound effect on the body, mind and psyche. The authors in this book argue that these benefits can be explained through better understanding of neuroscience. From drama to dance and music, through arts and the imagination, multiple stories unfold here to pique the reader's curiosity and help them envisage the relationship between the arts and neurological change."

    Prof Katrina Skewes McFerran, The University of Melbourne, Australia