What were Michael’s hopes and intentions for the future of Narrative Therapy? What’s been happening over the past decade that honors these intentions? In 2011, three of Michael’s closest colleagues- Maggie Carey, Rob Hall and Shona Russell – identified seven of Michael’s most cherished intentions: Children, Trauma & Its Consequences; Addressing Men’s Violence; Counseling in a Range of Contexts; Supporting Aboriginal, Indigenous and Community Workers; Continuing the Spirit of Inquiry; Developing Training Opportunities; Establishing Networks of Providers. We’ve organized our web-project in the hopes that you will help us take stock of the many initiatives honoring each of these intentions. If you have something to share, please fill out our contribution form here.
Reflecting on Michael’s Intentions – Maggie Carey, Rob Hall & Shona Russell
In January, 2008, Michael established “Adelaide Narrative Therapy Centre (ANTC)” — a new centre for narrative teaching and practice in Adelaide. After Michael’s death, Maggie Carey, Shona Russell and Rob Hall renamed this small centre that Michael got started, “Narrative Practices Adelaide” (NPA). “We see ourselves as a small, vibrant centre that collaborates with other centres and that acknowledges the rich and varied history of Michael’s work.” In April, 2011, they recorded a conversation about several of Michael’s intentions in keeping narrative therapy flourishing, “as a beginning not an ending.”
It’s interesting to remember how enthusiastic Michael was when we would meet in his kitchen as a little group to talk about these ideas and to build on them together. Rob Hall
Michael White loved to be in the company of children, and his work with children was filled with beauty, laughter and intrigue. He often spoke about the extreme importance of finding ways for children and families to address trauma. He received many referrals of children in child protection services as well as with larger systems such as Aboriginal communities impacted by suicide. In Africa, he met with over 60 agencies providing services to children impacted by AIDS epidemic. What contribution would you like to make to this tapestry of narrative initiatives with children and their families?
We begin by reviewing a brief audio edit of a “Narrative Practices Adelaide” conversation. Toward addressing violence in their work with men, Maggie, Shona and Rob reflected on their teamwork and Alan Jenkins framework for “Invitations to Responsibility.” In addition, we add below a number of projects and few (of many) Friday Afternoon Videos sponsored by the Dulwich Centre. Do you have something to contribute? We welcome other articles, recordings and reflections!
Michael talked about his hope to return to doing direct work with people with complex needs. As an illustration, we begin with Narrative Practices Adelaide and their commitment to providing counseling and therapeutic services in their local community. Their therapeutic work often links them with government and non-government community services and they value ongoing working relationship with a range of family and community agencies in Adelaide. Please join us in describing similar initiatives where you live.