Psycho-Social Therapies and Care Environments


Special Interest Group: Psycho-Social Therapies and Care Environments (PST&CE)

The PST&CE SIG : an open forum for Oral History Society members, to explore the intersections, divergences, and shared worlds of oral history, psycho-social therapies, and therapeutic and care environments.

[Please note: This Group is currently on vacation while reviewing its remit and future.]

‘Where do the psychological and the social meet, and where does oral history fit in?’

The Group is about
  • the oral history of the psycho-social therapies (taken broadly to include psychoanalysis and other psychodynamic psychotherapies, as well as group therapies, and, in the context of this list, to act as a kind of shorthand to include ‘therapeutic/care environments’);
  • the use of oral history as an adjunct to the psycho-social therapies;
  • oral history as a tool and technique within the psycho-social therapies;
  • the distinctions between oral history and the psycho-social therapies;
  • the role of psycho-social/psychodynamic therapeutic insights within the practice of oral history,
  • and their application as tools for analysing and understanding the theory and practice of oral history and of oral histories themselves;
  • and, of course, it is about what the specialisms involved can learn in open dialogue with one another and society more broadly.
Who is it for?
  • Any member of the Oral History Society wishing the explore the dynamics of the oral history interview, including the role of emotions and personal past experiences in shaping narrative and one’s own and the interviewee’s responses
  • Oral historians and other social scientists interested in the history of therapeutic and care settings, and the psycho-social therapies generally (taken broadly)
  • Anyone involved in care and therapeutic settings who wishes to explore the histories of their institutions and practice, and/or the use of life story and other oral history approaches with clients and their families
  • Former children or clients of care and therapeutic settings and relationships wishing to explore their own histories or that of institutions or organisations of which they may have been members
  • Oral historians and practitioners involved in reminiscence and/or life story work and/or therapy with the elderly or children and young people respectively
  • Psychotherapists and others wishing to engage with oral history as part of their therapeutic or care practice, or as part of a broader therapeutic approach
For the Group’s Terms of Reference, see here.

Congratulations to everyone who took part in our Inaugural Conference on April 27, 2016:

Starting a conversation…“Where I’m coming from, What I’m doing”


– Conference recordings

– Participant feedback and observations

(Dr. Carolyn Mears of Colorado, ending her Personal Reflections as a Columbine Mum, oral historian and trauma researcher, at the PST&CE inaugural conference in 2016)