Publication Date


Document Type

Masters Thesis


School for Social Work


Schizophrenia-Treatment, Narrative therapy, Recovery, Schizophrenia, Recovery movement


This theoretical study examines narrative approaches in recovery-oriented psychotherapy with individuals with schizophrenia. This study was undertaken in an effort to address a gap in the literature regarding theoretical frameworks to guide psychotherapists in providing services that facilitate the recovery process for individuals with schizophrenia. Psychotherapy has had an evolving and often contentious role in the treatment of schizophrenia. Psychotherapy was once a standard form of treatment for schizophrenia, but currently psychopharmacology is the dominate treatment method. Interest in psychotherapy in treatment for schizophrenia is once again increasing, however. Influenced by the mental health recovery movement, the mental health system has begun explore ways that treatment can promote recovery by addressing the social and emotional difficulties that individuals with schizophrenia struggle with after the onset of their illness. To address the lack of theoretical frameworks guiding recovery-oriented psychotherapy, this study examines three emerging narrative therapy approaches with individuals with schizophrenia: Michael White's narrative therapy, personal narrative construction, and open dialogue. These narrative approaches, while requiring further research to understand their effectiveness, show promise as potential frameworks for recovery-oriented services.




v, 68 p. Thesis (M.S.W.)--Smith College School for Social Work, Northampton, Mass., 2009. Includes bibliographical references (p. 62-68)