Supporting Human Dignity in a Collapsing Field – Joanna Kato, Guus Klaren, Nurith Levi (Eds.)

Supporting Human Dignity in a Collapsing Field. Gestalt approach in the social and political contexts - Joanna Kato, Guus Klaren, Nurith Levi

Supporting Human Dignity in a Collapsing Field

Gestalt approach in the social and political contexts

Edited by Joanna Kato, Guus Klaren, Nurith Levi

ISBN: 978-88-989-1223-0

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In this book you will come close to some of the greatest sufferings and injuries of the contemporary world: war, and the horror it implies, traumatic migrations, abuse, violence, rejection, solitude, neglect, poverty. But do not forget, reader: pain and evil is presented before your eyes thanks to the fact that somebody was there, to witness, to care, to share, to heal, to cry.

To be-with. To lend her or his flesh to those wounds so that they are not born by one woman or one man alone. The authors are “just” Gestalt therapists who are responding to a call away from the usual therapeutic setting.

This book is an expression of the mission of the EAGT Human Rights and Social Responsibility Committee: to finnd and to be found. To create connections. And circularly, awareness. We can change the geography and the history by creating connections. Not the maps already petrified in the books, but the landscape we live in.

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Introductory Note, by Margherita Spagnuolo Lobb and
Jeff Allison

Foreword, by Gianni Francesetti

Introduction, by Joanna Kato, Guus Klaren and Nurith Levi


Before Part I
Paul Goodman’s Heritage. Relevance for Today,
by Dieter Bongers

Part I – Political Conflict, War and Aftermath

1. The Maidan Syndrome or the Mechanism of the
Formation of the Collective Trauma,
by Olena Levchuk

2. Do Those Who Have a Voice for Others Have a Voice
About Themselves? Journalists’ Mental Health and War,
by Tatyana Konrad and Natalya Stotetskaya

3. Peculiarities in Providing Psychotherapeutic Assistance to
Combatants with Adjustment Disorders,
by Svitlana Efimova and Liliia Zhyvotovska

4. From Yugoslavian Wars to Middle East Refugee Crisis:
Insights and Transfer of Knowledge and Experience,
by Iskra Pejić, Jasenka Pregrad and Tia Tomiša

5. What’s Wrong? Reflections of a Crisis Psychologist,
by Olena Levchuk

Passage From Part I to Part II

They Left Their Home and Hearth, Poems,
by Greet Cassiers

Part II – Migration and Refugee Crises

6. Crossing Borders and Boundaries. Towards an
Encounter (Working on the Greek Islands),
by Ioanna Alexia, Nikos Gionakis, Ioannis Goumas, Katerina
Kaisidou and Joanna Kato

7. Supervising (Supporting) Front Line Workers.
Reflecting on the Process,
by Joanna Kato

8. What Is the Figure? An Example of a Field and
Changes of Figures in a Refugee Transit Country,
by Martina Čarija and Jasenka Pregrad

9. Contextualising Therapist Self-Care in Therapeutic
Work with Refugees,
by Katharina Stahlmann and Deirdre Winter

10. Shaping Change Through Dialogue with
Responsibility for a Common Future,
by Gabriele Blankertz

Part III – Gestalt Approach in Broader
Social and Political Contexts

11. The Trauma of Generational Poverty: Healing
on the Contact Boundary,
by Sara Hendrick

12. Therapeutic and Leadership Lessons from Belfast:
A Framework for Ethical Practice,
by Rosie Burrow

13. Politics as Therapy, Therapy as Politics? Contributions
and Challenges of Gestalt Therapy Interventions in the
Context of Social and Environmental Injustices,
by Marien González Hidalgo

Epilogue: Gestalt Is not a Magic Wand, it Is Making Change
by Conscious Action,
by Nurith Levi

Biographical Notes

Appendix: Mission of Human Rights and Social
Responsibility Committee EAGT

The Editors

Joanna Kato

Joanna Kato, Mgr. Psychologist, Gestalt therapist, supervisor and trainer. Works in private practice and is an associate and volunteer at Babel Day Centre in Athens, Greece. Trains internationally. Current chair of the Human Rights and Social Responsibility Committee of EAGT and member of the Greek Association of Gestalt Therapy (HAGT). Involved in the field of human rights since 1997. EAP member, ECP holder.

Guus Klaren

Guus Klaren, MSW, Gestalt therapist, supervisor, international trainer and consultant in private practice. Facilitated transformation process for a wide range of organizations. Initially worked as a social worker and a teacher methodology social work to vocational training. Former senior partner of a local NGO in Ghana working with communities at socio-economic poverty reduction. Past president of Dutch/Flemish Association for Gestalt Theory and Therapy (NVAGT). Member of Human Rights and Social Responsibility Committee of EAGT. Registered EAGT therapist, supervisor and GPO.

Nurith Levi

Nurith Levi, PhD, MSW, is a certified psychotherapist, family and Gestalt therapist and supervisor. Works in private practice, with couples, families, groups and individuals. Specialist in children and adolescents’ therapy. International Gestalt trainer and supervisor. Chairperson of Training Standards Committee, and member of Human Rights and Social Responsibility committee of EAGT. Former Dean and senior lecturer at the academic College Beit Berl, senior lecturer at the School of Social Work at Ben Gurion and Tel Aviv Universities. Founder and first elected Chairperson of the Israeli Association for Gestalt Therapy. Volunteer at child protection projects (forensic evaluations, guardian ad litem, foster and adoption families).

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How to quote this book

J. Kato, G. Klaren, N. Levi (Eds.) (2019). Supporting Human Dignity in a Collapsing Field. Siracusa (Italy): Istituto di Gestalt HCC Italy Publ. Co. (

ISBN: 978-88-989-1223-0