Abstract Title:

Dance/movement therapy approaches to fostering resilience and recovery among African adolescent torture survivors.

Abstract Source:

Torture. 2007;17(2):134-55. PMID: 17728491

Abstract Author(s):

David Alan Harris


Dance/movement therapy (DMT) interventions, if designed to promote cultural relevance and community ownership, may enhance healing among African adolescent survivors of war and organised violence. The author posits a theoretical rationale for body movement-based approaches to psychosocial rehabilitation, and offers DMT's holism as evidence of transcultural applicability. Two distinct DMT iniatives with this population are discussed in terms of theoretical assumptions, implementation, and outcomes. Both efforts afforded creative means for discharging aggression and restoring interpersonal connection. The first of these programes engaged a community of South Sudanese refugee youths, resettled to the U.S., in a series of gatherings for traditional dancing and drumming that reconstituted a central culture-of-origin ritual. Anectodal evidence supports this psychosocial intervention's emphasis on group cohesion as a vehicle with both preventive and reparative capacities. Also a series of DMT groups with youths in Sierra Leone. All organized several years post-conflict, these interventions involved applying the DMT modality within a framework of Western psychotherapeutic conventions described in a series of groups with youths, all organized several years post-conflict, is presented. Programe evaluation revealed a drop in average symptom expression among a group comprised of former boy combatants who reported continual reduction in symptoms of anxiety, depression, intrusive recollection, elevated arousal, and aggression. The group's teenage males joined actively in improvisatory dancing and in other structured creative exercices. Theese former child soldiers later elected to demonstrate their wartime experiences through public presentation of a role-play. A report on this event illustrates the success of the process in overcoming stigma and enabling meaningful community reintegration. Thus, whether introduced in refuge or post-conflict, DMT approaches are shown to embody revitalizing psychosocial support in the aftermath of massive violence.

Study Type : Human Study

Print Options

Key Research Topics

Sayer Ji
Founder of GreenMedInfo.com

Subscribe to our informative Newsletter & get Nature's Evidence-Based Pharmacy

Our newsletter serves 500,000 with essential news, research & healthy tips, daily.

Download Now

500+ pages of Natural Medicine Alternatives and Information.

This website is for information purposes only. By providing the information contained herein we are not diagnosing, treating, curing, mitigating, or preventing any type of disease or medical condition. Before beginning any type of natural, integrative or conventional treatment regimen, it is advisable to seek the advice of a licensed healthcare professional.

© Copyright 2008-2021 GreenMedInfo.com, Journal Articles copyright of original owners, MeSH copyright NLM.