A Therapeutic Approach to Teaching Poetry: Individual by T. Williams

By T. Williams

Explains how the learn of poetry, by way of supplying reviews just like these produced via poetry treatment, may help scholars notice themselves and strengthen their power to impact swap on the planet.

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Extra info for A Therapeutic Approach to Teaching Poetry: Individual Development, Psychology, and Social Reparation

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Poetry has a unique value among literary forms. 2 Poetry transcends ordinary experience and operates at a heightened level of consciousness. 3 This uncanny ability of poetry comes from its engagement with what Freud calls the primary processes, which offer a regression to the core of one’s being, giving rise to pleasure and ecstasy even when dealing with negative emotions. These 18 / therapeutic approach to teaching poetry primary processes include the capacities for metaphoric and metonymic association, the primitive energies and emotions of the body, and visual orientation (V 601–606).

When experiencing art, Stern says, “you can experience the level of intensity and quality of feeling that is occurring in the other and that may be elicited in yourself” (160). We find the expression of vitality affects in poetic language rewarding beyond what we find in ordinary prose. Vaughan finds vitality affects invaluable for communicating with her patients in therapeutic practice. Tonal elements of communication that hearken back to infantile expression modes provide the therapist with important personal connections with her adult patients (94).

As Susan Vaughan puts it, “After learning the rules your [neurological] networks contain in psychotherapy, the next step is to begin to challenge your character’s closely held values, question their operation modes” (74). This challenge to the existing ego does not come without a destructive element. “Clearly, getting in touch with the inner self will not always be a pleasant experience. Sadness and pain are frequently part of the growth process,” write Hynes and Hynes-Berry (30). New revelations and realizations can lead to an experience of fragmentation, but this fragmentation is a necessary step for ultimate renewal.

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