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Turns in the Road

Highlights from the Networker Journey

January/February 2017
Out of all the hundreds and hundreds of articles that have appeared in the Networker over the past four decades, we’ve chosen a small sampling that captures the magazine’s most journalistic side, conveying not so much the eternal verities of our profession, but the sense of reading a first draft of the field’s history. Among other things, you’ll find therapeutic methods that, as exciting as they seemed at the moment, didn’t stand the test of time as well as initial forays into discussing complex issues we’re still struggling with today. We’ve also added in a few examples of writing so immediate and compelling that they have an air of timelessness. Prepare yourself for an interesting journey.
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Still Crazy After All These Years?

A Look at 30 Years of the Networker

March/April 2012
Remember mimeograph machines, the Milan Group, the False Memory Foundation, DSM–III, the Family Therapy Networker, and private practice before managed care? Take a stroll down memory land and revisit some of the ups and downs of our glorious profession over the past three decades.
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Point Of View

Whatever Became of Feminism?: Harriet Lerner on the Legacy of the Women's Movement

January/February 2011
Whatever happened to feminism? Psychologist and bestselling author Harriet Lerner offers some perspective.

Larger than Life

Marianne Walters Was Family Therapy's Foremost Feminist

May/June 2006
Her name never had the instant brand recognition of the founding gurus of family therapy, but feminist trailblazer Marianne Walters had as great an impact on the field as any of the master theory-builders.

Rolling the Rock

Why would anyone choose a career in community mental health today?

July/August 2008
Beset by chronic budgetary constraints, invasive regulations, and insufficient respect from society at large, community mental health today seems a Sisyphean career choice. A therapist who's spent his career working in the public sector reflects on what's helped him maintain his passion.

Fearless Foursome

The Women's Project Prepares to Pass the Torch: An Interview

November/December 1997
For two decades, the members of the Women’s Project in Family Therapy were the outspoken feminist conscience of psychotherapy and, with their humor and warm camaraderie, became beloved role models in a field that had long been dominated by male leaders.
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Ghosts in the Therapy Room

The Systematic Impact of Family Secrets

May/June 1993
Secrets can grow like weeds through the generations, sending unexpected tendrils into every corner of a family's life. They require at least avoidance, at worst outright lies that can become a habit, branching into seemingly innocuous areas until whole dimensions of life are off-limits to spontaneous talk. Secrets shape not only relationships, but inner lives. "If you knew, you would not accept me,"

think the secret-keepers, while those kept in the dark grow worried and confused: "Something's wrong, I'm not supposed to notice, and it must be my fault."

When a family with a secret walks into a therapy session, the heaviness is palpable. The secret haunts the room like a ghost, looking over everyone's shoulder, a tense and hovering presence. Everyone waits for the other shoe to drop. When secrets are skillfully uncovered, the truth can make people free. And yet for years the subject of secrets was almost a secret within family therapy itself.

When I was trained as a family therapist in the early 1970s, nobody taught me much about secrets, beyond a handful of caveats. Effective inquiry into secrets requires a focus on content as well as relationship, and at that time family therapists were in a broad-brush revolt against Freud, who specialized in exca vating secrets. The book-lined offices of the individual therapists who followed him were repositories of secrets, much like the religious confessionals of earlier times. We wanted no part of that old role.

Good-Bye Paradox, Hello Invariant Prescription

Palazzoli and the Family Game

September/October 1987
After Italian psychiatrist Mara Selvini Palazzoli became celebrated for her work with therapeutic paradox in the 1970s, she stunned the family therapy world with an even more flamboyant intervention—the invariant prescription.
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