Social Work: The Basics  book cover
1st Edition

Social Work: The Basics

ISBN 9780415603997
Published August 2, 2012 by Routledge
224 Pages

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Book Description

Social Work: The Basics is an insightful introduction to the often misrepresented world of social work. This accessible book presents a broad view of contemporary social work, exploring its roots and its possible future. It dispels myths surrounding social work, addresses media debates, and offers a balanced account of what social workers do. The book argues for a social work that is partisan in support of social justice. Questions covered include:

  • How did social work arise?
  • How and why do people come into contact with social workers?
  • What are the true aims of social work - to help or to control?
  • What is the relationship between social work and social policy?
  • How and why do people become social workers?
  • What’s it like to be a social worker?
  • Can social work cross borders?

Drawing examples from the full range of social work practice, this book is valuable reading for all individuals interested in the field of social work. It will provide a helpful introduction for students considering a career in social work, those beginning social work courses, and other professionals whose work brings them into contact with social workers and who want to find out more about what social work is.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements  Pioneer, investigator, agitator: a brief introduction  1. Reformist or radical: Social work's roots and different identities  2. Harridan or heroine: the public work of social work  3. Clients or service users: how and why people come into contact with social work  4. A profession or a career; a calling or a job: what social workers do  and how social work is organisd  5. A discipline or a skill; an education or a training: how social workers learn their practice  6. Universal or specific: social work local and global  7. Past and future: the pioneers of today are the prophets of tomorrow (Attlee)  Index of names  Index of subjects

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Mark Doel is Emeritus Professor of Social Work at Sheffield Hallam University, England. He has a wealth of experience in writing about, teaching and practising social work, having worked in the UK, USA, Eastern Europe and Russia. He is the author of Social Work Placements: A Traveller’s Guide (Routledge, 2010).