Journal article

Theorizing therapeutic culture Past influences, future directions

Katie Wright

JOURNAL OF SOCIOLOGY | SAGE PUBLICATIONS LTD | Published : 2008

Abstract

Analyses of the influence of psychology and the growth of counselling during the 20th century commonly point to the deleterious effects of a cultural shift from reticence and self-reliance to emotional expressiveness and help-seeking. Indeed, the ascendancy of therapeutic culture has been widely interpreted as fostering cultural decline and enabling new forms of social control. Drawing on less pessimistic assessments of cultural change and recent directions in social theory, this article argues for greater recognition of the ambivalent legacy of the therapeutic turn. Through a reinterpretation of the consequences of the diminution of traditional authority, the weakening of the division betwe..

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