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Psychology and Law

Publisher: Moscow State University of Psychology and Education

ISSN (online): 2222-5196


License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published since 2011

Published quarterly

Free of fees
Open Access Journal


Possibilities and Limitations of Therapeutic Interventions When Working with Children and Their Families in the Settlements for the Homeless 931


Gessmann H.-W.
Doctor of Clinical Psychology, Director of the Center of Excellence, Diagnostics and Therapy, University of California, Duisburg, Germany

The article raises the issue of socio-therapeutical help for homeless children and families in Germany. The causes of homelessness and its consequences for families and children are considered by the author in connection with the social, political and even historical context of lives of such families. Based on the studies by well-known German and American scholars and his own psychotherapy practice, the author analyzes different approaches to identification of areas and strategies of therapeutic intervention in the family problems of the homeless in terms of psychoanalytic, psychodynamic and systemic models of psychotherapy. In the situation of post-crisis reduction of the social and economic resources for social help to the needy, the author considers the capabilities of family therapy when working with the homeless families as the most adequate form of preparing them to the limited life perspectives and to overcoming the destructive and auto-aggressive intra-familial processes.

Keywords: homeless, ghetto families, stigma, discrimination, lack of socialization, distorted socialization, socialization of the homeless, family therapy, therapeutic family.

Column: Foreign Studies in Legal Psychology

For Reference

  1. Rexilius G. Familientherapie. In: Zygowski H. (Hrsg.): Erziehungsberatung in der Krise, dgvt Forum 6, Tübingen, 1984.
  2. Richter H.E.: Die Gruppe. Hamburg, 1972.
  3. Stierlin H.; Rücker-Embden J.; Wetzel N. u. Wirsching M.: Das erste Familiengespräch, Stuttgart, 1977.
  4. Tranchina P.: Zu eigenen Aspekten der Arbeit im Territorium. In: SimonsTh. (Hrsg.): Absage an die Anstalt. Frankfurt/M., 1980.
  5. Wulff E.: Psychisches Leiden und Politik. Frankfurt-New York, 1981.

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