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January 2022

Music Therapy in the Negative

Journal/Book: British Journal of Music Therapy. 1985; 16: Herfortshire, UK. British Society for Music Therapy 69 Avondale Avenue East Barnet EN4 8NB Hertfordshire UK. 14-19.

Abstract: Certain patients project not only on the therapist (who can appear to be some sort of wizard, exercising magic powers) but on composers, instruments, and music itself. Children and criminals often act as though the instrument they are playing is a torturer, a victim, or a parent figure to fight. Improvised music becomes a battleground or a reconstruction of childhood withholding. In accepting what appears to be negative, even violent, the therapist is paving the way for a more positive expression.

Keyword(s): projection, transference, symbol, criminals, children, improvisation, violence, negative-emotions, containment.

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