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Title: A sociological approach to aging, spirituality and counselling
Contributor(s): Bowers, Randolph (author)
Publication Date: 2006
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Abstract: Chapter 16, 'A sociological approach to aging, spirituality and counselling' by Randolph Bowers, explores through a critical methodology the links between religion, spirituality, pastoral care, counselling, and the central notion of aging. Aging is used as one discursive domain where the politics of social meaning, agency, and professional services are playing out on the world stage. Counselling is analysed from a social critical stance and is set in a wider social and historical process related to modernism, materialism, and postmodern critique. Aspects of feminism, poststructuralism, and queer theory come to play an important role in analysis, asking the reader to grapple with the evolution of thought on aging and social meaning as this applies to the field of counselling. This contribution to the literature is important for a number of reasons. First, it draws links between counselling and an allied field of pastoral care, and more broadly, spiritual counselling. Second, the work engages in philosophical reflection on central issues of meaning that characterise our era. These issues relate to a broad social and historical analysis of the field of practice that highlights some of the central intellectual challenges being addressed over the last several decades; namely, issues of identity, difference, culture, and meaning. More than any other, these debates typify the sorts of theories and approaches to counselling that are currently emerging. For example, narrative approaches to therapy rely heavily on these wider social and intellectual trends and draw links with the postmodern analysis of counselling and psychotherapy. Third, the chapter sits squarely at a crossroad between what was the field of counselling to date, and what the future of counselling may become.
Publication Type: Book Chapter
Source of Publication: The Practice of Counselling, p. 374-394
Publisher: Thomson
Place of Publication: Melbourne, Australia
ISBN: 0170129780
Field of Research (FOR): 160702 Counselling, Welfare and Community Services
HERDC Category Description: B1 Chapter in a Scholarly Book
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