Blog — bibliotherapy

One of the Best Books on Family and Relationships You’ll Read

Posted by Bijal Shah on

One of the Best Books on Family and Relationships You’ll Read

Photo by Emmanuel Olguín on Unsplash As we enter a new era of Gen X and Millennials heading up young families, there is a new kind of family evolution taking place. The family as an institution is being challenged from all angles. With the complexities of life, the variety of family structure including re-marriages and same-sex families, there is a renewed interest in family dynamics, and in particular family therapy.  As the family unit forms a new identity, I could not help but draw on Salvador Minuchin’s book on family therapy, titled “Family Healing”, which has been simultaneously nostalgic and sobering...

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2019’s Best Summer Nonfiction Reads So Far

Posted by Bijal Shah on

2019’s Best Summer Nonfiction Reads So Far

Photo by Dan Dumitriu on Unsplash 2019 has been the year of nonfiction. From the extremely informative parenting bible The Books You Wish Your Parents Had Read by Philippa Perry to the literary treat, Mitchell S Jackson’s Survival Math: Notes on an All-American Family here’s our roundup of some of the best books for 2019 to date. (There’s a few more on our reading list which are worth a mention here including The Unwinding of the Miracle: A Memoir of Life, Death and Everything That Comes After by Julie Yip-Williams and Three Womenby Lisa Taddeo. The reviews of these and other books will be included in our final best of 2019 nonfiction list.) 1. Long Live The...

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Interview with Pirjo Suvilehto, Finnish Bibliotherapist and Doctor of Philosophy & Literature

Posted by Bijal Shah on

Interview with Pirjo Suvilehto, Finnish Bibliotherapist and Doctor of Philosophy & Literature

Last week we interviewed Pirjo Suvilehto who is a fascinating Finnish bibliotherapist, having completed a Docent in Literature and a PhD in Philosophy at the University of Oulu. She has significant experience in the fields of creative writing and literary education. She's also a lecturer at the University of Oulu and has completed extensive research in bibliotherapy, children's literature, creative writing and art pedagogy within human-animal sciences. Her doctoral thesis is the first academic study in Finland to consider children's and adolescents' bibliotherapy. She's also authored 30 published books of poems, picture books and nonfiction and trains student bibliotherapists in...

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Why Literary Fiction is My Favourite Form of Therapy

Posted by Bijal Shah on

Why Literary Fiction is My Favourite Form of Therapy

When we read a great fiction book — we experience a certain sense of joy, happiness or satisfaction. Beyond reading a great story it is often the striking connection we feel to the characters and the fact that the book resonates with us. All the elements of story telling have hit the right buttons deep within us and released a whole dose of serotonin that allows us to experience a feel-good moment. That feel-good moment comprises a sense of belonging and being part of a greater story, where we momentarily escape from the challenges and hardships of our own life. And the...

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Why poetry is one of the most powerful forms of therapy

Posted by Bijal Shah on

Why poetry is one of the most powerful forms of therapy

April is National Poetry Month and naturally a great time to explore the immense therapeutic powers of poetry. Reading and writing poetry both engage our senses along with our emotions, making the art form experiential and hugely effective in connecting with our minds. Both writing and reading poetry, through their expression of feelings and words have highly therapeutic effects on the mind. The structure of a poem favours brevity yet the best poems also capture succinct detail, making them incredibly powerful in getting a message across to the reader. Writing poetry requires the poet to be extremely disciplined with his...

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