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The relevance of gender in the profession and practice of art therapy : a male perspective

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The relevance of gender in the profession and practice of art therapy : a male perspective

Shortliffe, Thomas (2004) The relevance of gender in the profession and practice of art therapy : a male perspective. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

The following research focuses on the relevance of gender in the profession and practice of art therapy. Women make up more than 80% of professionals in the field and this has prompted the question: "Why are so few men art therapists?" The issue of men's absence is investigated within a qualitative framework in part by asking: "What is the experience of a male art therapy intern like?" A heuristic approach outlined by Douglass and Moustakas, (1985) began with an "internal search to know" the meaning of my experience as the only male in an otherwise all female group of 11 art therapy interns. A review of the literature demonstrates that the social construction of gender is an important consideration in diagnosis and treatment considerations as well as the in professional history and present of art therapy. A survey comprised of 6 questions was designed to sample the perceptions of 17 professional and interning art therapists regarding the relevance of gender in their professional and practical experiences. The question: "why are there so few men art therapists?' was examined. The constant comparative procedure (Maykut & Morehouse, 1994) was used to make meaning of the data. Responses suggest that the socialization of gender is perceived to be an important factor involved in the absence of men from professional art therapy and that male and female respondents may perceive the relevance of gender in art therapy from distinct perspectives. Finally, 5 paintings were produced towards a creative synthesis of the data. The creative process and product in the final component of this study are discussed for their tacit, nonverbal rendering of the subject area towards a creative synthesis of the findings.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Fine Arts > Creative Arts Therapies
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Shortliffe, Thomas
Pagination:vii, 164 leaves : ol. bill. ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Creative Arts Therapies
Date:2004
Thesis Supervisor(s):Peterson, Leland
ID Code:8678
Deposited By:Concordia University Libraries
Deposited On:18 Aug 2011 14:32
Last Modified:18 Aug 2011 15:17
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