1st Edition

The Power of Connection
Recent Developments in Relational-Cultural Theory

ISBN 9780415850131
Published October 30, 2013 by Routledge
258 Pages

USD $62.95

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Book Description

Relational-Cultural theory (RCT) proposes that all people grow through and toward relationships throughout the lifespan. RCT challenges prevailing theories that depict the "separate self" as the hallmark of maturity. Rather than movement toward autonomy and separation, RCT suggests we develop ever more differentiated ways of connecting. An increase in growth-fostering relationships results in: a sense of vitality and zest; increasing clarity about ourselves and others; augmented creativity and ability to take action; an experience of worth and empowerment; and a desire for more connectedness with others. Disconnections are inevitable in relationships and RCT focuses on relational resilience, the ways people can re-establish positive and growth-fostering relationships.

RCT further emphasizes the importance of cultural and societal forces in causing either growth-fostering connection or destructive disconnection. This volume explores the process of change in therapy and in other relationships; how race and other forms of stratification create pain; and how people develop resilience and strength in relationships characterized by mutuality.

This book was based on a special issue of  Women and Therapy.

Table of Contents

1. Recent Developments in Relational-Cultural Theory  Judith V. Jordan  SECTION ONE: RCT AND THERAPY  2. Introduction to Section One: RCT and Therapy  3. Creative Moments in Relational-Cultural Therapy  Irene Pierce Stiver, Wendy Rosen, Janet Surrey and Jean Baker Miller  4. What Changes in Therapy? Who Changes?  Natalie S. Eldridge, Janet L. Surrey, Wendy P. Rosen and Jean Baker Miller  5. Strengthening Resilience in a Risky World: It’s All About Relationships  Linda M. Hartling  6. When Racism Gets Personal: Toward Relational Healing  Maureen Walker  7. How Therapy Helps When the Culture Hurts  Maureen Walker  SECTION TWO: THE IMPORTANCE OF POWER  8. Introduction to Section Two: The Importance of Power  9. How Change Happens: Controlling Images, Mutuality, and Power  Jean Baker Miller  10. Power and Effectiveness: Envisioning an Alternate Paradigm  Maureen Walker  11. Telling the Truth About Power  Jean Baker Miller  SECTION THREE: RCT AND SOCIAL JUSTICE  12. Introduction to Section Three: RCT and Social Justice  13. Relational-Cultural Practice: Working in a Nonrelational World  Linda Hartling and Elizabeth Sparks  14. Learning at the Margin: New Models of Strength  Judith V. Jordan  15. Valuing Vulnerability: New Definitions of Courage  Judith V. Jordan  16. Commitment to Connection in a Culture of Fear  Judith V. Jordan

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Judith V. Jordan is Director of the Jean Baker Miller Training Institute and an Assistant Professor at the Harvard Medical School. She has written and lectured widely on topics of relational psychology, empathy, mutuality, the psychology of women, shame and the power of connection.