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Rediscovering Groups

Rediscovering Groups

A Psychoanalyst's Journey Beyond Individual Psychology

Marshall Edelson and David N. Berg

Part of the International Library of Group Analysis series

Quick Overview

Edelson and Berg use stories to present, reflect on and learn from experience. The authors deplore the tendency to rely on individual psychology for understanding problems in groups or organizations and so, emphasizing the psychopathology of individuals, to blame them for what is going on.
Details Price Qty
Paperback / softback
1999, 9.13in x 6.26in / 232mm x 159mm, 416pp
ISBN: 978-1-85302-726-0
AU$72.00

Description

Edelson and Berg use stories to present, reflect on and learn from experience. They contrast the stories we tell about individuals and interpersonal interactions and those we tell about groups and organizations, and when we most usefully tell which kind of story. The authors deplore the tendency to rely on individual psychology for understanding problems in groups or organizations and so, emphasizing the psychopathology of individuals, to blame them for what is going on.
Their stories are about conflicts between individual and group, and how these affect the formation of a group and what it's like to be a group member. They are also about using and abusing authority; scapegoating; and perceiving, pigeonholing, and responding to members in terms of stereotypes of the other groups to which they belong (gender, race, ethnicity, and status).
Finally, the book suggests the various ways different kinds of groups can be used to help people in distress. It also presents what goes into bringing about organizational changes to help people who are trying to do their jobs in less than optimal conditions.

Reviews

'Impressively rich with descriptive data, the book presents sophisticated analyses of group and intergroup dynamics in organizations and explains how these forces aid and impede teaching and learning by mental health professionals.'
- APA review of books

'Edelson and Berg provide thorough descriptions and sound analyses of how their field and others are undermined by our collective failure to use well what is known about intergroup phenomena' `'
- APA Review of Books

'…the book which is organized in the form of an anthology of reports. These cover work with an almost dizzying variety of groups, mainly in institutional psychiatric settings. … Edelson and Berg are convinced that in working with groups, and in attempts to understand the problems of group members, staying as much as possible with group-as-a-whole or a social-systemic level of analysis mitigates inclinations to blame "problem-individuals" and to create scapegoats. They believe that therapists trained in this spirit and using this level of interpretation may be able to convey to patients a most important idea regarding the nature of their relationship. This is, "I may be able to help you, not because I don't have your problem, but because I recognize myself in you." They spend thirty chapters conveying this message. Social group workers reading Rediscovering Groups are unlikely to forget it.'
- Social Work with Groups

'Rediscovering Groups is an extraordinary achievement. It illuminates, through narrative and commentary, the complexities and contradictions of group and organizational life. Marshall Edelson and David Berg, by writing with uncommon intelligence, wisdom, frankness, and clarity about their own intensely felt experiences, give us observations and insights that are at once intimate and universal. The book is so carefully constructed and richly textured, with stories so well told and commentary so pertinent, that it should be required reading for all of us… whatever our role… who work with groups of any kind. It fills a need that no other book comes close to filling.'
- from the Foreword by Robert M. Lipgar

Authors

Foreword by: Robert Lipgar