Loss and Change (Psychology Revivals): Revised Edition

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First published in 1974, then reissued in 1986 with a long introduction by the author, which developed the analysis in the light of recent theory and related it to work done in the field since its first publication.

The late Peter Marris shows how understanding grief can help us to understand processes of change, both personal and social, and to handle them with more compassion for ourselves and others. He sees grieving as the working out of a psychological reintegration, whose principles are essentially similar whether the ‘structures of meaning’ of our life fall apart from the loss of a personal relationship, of a predictable social context or of an interpretable world. Marris draws on his wide-ranging research to develop his argument. A study of widows, a description of the devastating effects of urban renewal projects on people whose familiar neighbourhoods are destroyed, an analysis of the activities of tribal associations in Nigeria, and reflections on the analogies between scientific and political revolutions are a few of the studies Marris weaves together in tracing the meaning of change and loss in human life.

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Published on
Oct 10, 2014
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Psychology / Psychotherapy / Counseling
Social Science / Human Services
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A former paramedic’s visceral, poignant, and mordantly funny account of a decade spent on Atlanta’s mean streets saving lives and connecting with the drama and occasional beauty that lies inside catastrophe.

In the aftermath of 9/11 Kevin Hazzard felt that something was missing from his life—his days were too safe, too routine. A failed salesman turned local reporter, he wanted to test himself, see how he might respond to pressure and danger. He signed up for emergency medical training and became, at age twenty-six, a newly minted EMT running calls in the worst sections of Atlanta. His life entered a different realm—one of blood, violence, and amazing grace.

Thoroughly intimidated at first and frequently terrified, he experienced on a nightly basis the adrenaline rush of walking into chaos. But in his downtime, Kevin reflected on how people’s facades drop away when catastrophe strikes. As his hours on the job piled up, he realized he was beginning to see into the truth of things. There is no pretense five beats into a chest compression, or in an alley next to a crack den, or on a dimly lit highway where cars have collided. Eventually, what had at first seemed impossible happened: Kevin acquired mastery. And in the process he was able to discern the professional differences between his freewheeling peers, what marked each—as he termed them—as “a tourist,” “true believer,” or “killer.”

Combining indelible scenes that remind us of life’s fragile beauty with laugh-out-loud moments that keep us smiling through the worst, A Thousand Naked Strangers is an absorbing read about one man’s journey of self-discovery—a trip that also teaches us about ourselves.
This title is a classic work on social reform. It is an account of the origins and development of community action from its beginnings in the Ford Foundation Gray Area Programs and the President's Committee on Juvenile Delinquency, through the rise and decline of the War on Poverty and the Model Cities program. In the ruthlessly impartial examination of various poverty programs, two social scientists one British, one American--explain why programs of such size and complexity have only a minimal chance of success. They describe the realities of reform and point up how the conservatism of bureaucracy, the rivalries among political and administrative jurisdictions, and the apathy of the poor have often hindered national and local efforts. On the other hand, they show how these obstacles can be overcome by an imaginative combination of leadership, democratic participation, and scientific analysis.

This second edition also contains a new chapter that was not included in the first edition. This new chapter, tries to set the study in a broader context: first, by interpreting the political motives and constraints that led to the adoption of community action as a principal strategy of a nationwide war on poverty and second, by discussing the underlying weaknesses of democracy that community action implied and sought to tackle.

Distinguished by an analysis of the major critics of community action, the book provides a balanced perspective of the movement against its many foes. It is important reading for anyone engaged in planning or community action, whether as organizer, consultant, official, or politician.

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