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Transformational Reminiscence: Life Story Work [Kindle Edition]

John A. Kunz MS , MSW, ACSW, LCSW Soltys Florence Gray
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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  • Print ISBN-10: 0826115403
  • Print ISBN-13: 978-0826115409
  • Edition: 1
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Book Description

"[A]s recently as fifty years ago people believed that reminiscing was a sign of senility....Today, along with a greater understanding of the significance of reminiscence we have seen the rising popularity of private memoirs in various forms, from oral histories by universities to audio and videotapes for family archives. John A. Kunz and Florence Gray Soltys have made a major contribution to the field by providing a framework for individuals and groups engaged in this enriching and important work."
--Robert N. Butler, MD

Finally, a book that takes a "big picture" look at the complexities of using life story work with older adults. Using the life story matrix as a framework, the authors and their contributors cover the complexities of reminiscence and life review, techniques and advice for making a personal story public, and the delicate balance of when to focus on content and when the process of telling one's life story can be therapeutic or destructive.

Transformational Reminiscence teaches the reader how to use the full spectrum of life story approaches to enhance quality of life for older adults, ameliorate social and psychological problems, and intervene if they occur. Practical applications, anecdotes, exercises that help clarify the experiential side of the content, and helpful suggestions enhance each chapter and ensure a safe and ethical application of this technique. This book is a must read for anyone who uses a life story approach in his or her work with older adults or is teaching or supervising others in doing so.



Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

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About the Author

John A. Kunz, BSW, MS, has worked as a psychotherapist, author, and educator in the field of mental health since 1978. He began his practice with an emphasis on family systems and was the first practitioner to conduct family assessments within the medical community of Duluth, MN and Superior, WI in the early 1980s. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s Kunz worked with clients of all ages doing inpatient and outpatient individual, group, milieu, marital, and family therapy. From the mid-1980s until today he has increasingly focused on work in the area of gerontology and geriatrics. He has conducted hundreds of presentations, written numerous articles and book chapters, and has written and produced over a dozen educational videos. He is most known for his work in the field of reminiscence and life review. He founded the International Institute for Reminiscence and Life Review in 1995. He continues to direct this institute, its biennial conferences and many other health and human issues programs at the Center for Continuing Education/Extension at the University of Wisconsin - Superior.



Florence Gray Soltys, MSW, LCSW, is a clinical associate professor in the School of Social Work and the School of Medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has provided clinical work in the area of hospice and interdisciplinary assessment of frail elders since 1984. Her work in rural areas included the use of telemedicine and doing reminiscence with nursing home residents living in rural North Carolina. Her work in the community has enhanced care options by planning and executing needed programs for elders. She currently serves on the North Carolina Aging Study Commission and chairs numerous committees and boards.

Some of the recognition she has received includes: "The Distinguished Teaching Award for Post Baccalaureate Instruction for the University of North Carolina," "Trustee of the Year for the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging of the U.S.," "Social Worker of the Year in N.C.," "The Ned Brooks Award for Community Service," "Hospice Service Award," and others.

She is the current President of the International Institute for Reminiscence and Life Review.


Product Details

  • File Size: 1380 KB
  • Print Length: 248 pages
  • Publisher: Springer Publishing Company; 1 edition (April 23, 2007)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0056LS4JW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,573,376 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review by Noted Gerontologist James Birren May 31, 2007
Format:Hardcover
J. A. Kunz & F. G. Soltys. 2007. Transformational Reminiscence. New York: Springer.

The primary orientation of this book is to open a pathway to enhancing the lives of mature and older adults. The pathway is provided by methods of encouraging the telling and sharing of life stories, a process of enriching reminiscence.
There is growing interest our life stories in present day society. Uncertainties and ambiguities of life transitions have been increased by people living longer and having more active lives in a changing society that has rapidly evolved from the industrial into the information era. Society has become more efficient but also less personal. This book prepares the reader to work with older adults to release and interpret their memories and life stories which will result in increased personal strengths.
In the past, reminiscence by older adults was looked upon as an idle pre-occupation, a non-productive "killing of time". This book demonstrates that reminiscence is a productive activity which provides insights and releases the wisdom from accumulated experiences of long lives. There are many facets to memories and life stories. The eleven chapters of this book provide insights and instruction about methods to stimulate reminiscence and integrate memories. In addition to the two senior authors, there are eight other authors. They all review relevant literature and provide evidence that encourages individuals to engage in the processes of reminiscence and life review. The dominant professional background of the authors is in social work; five are from social work, two from counseling, and the remaining three are other specialized professionals, i.e., nursing, public health, and paraprofessional services.
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