By Karen Carnabucci, LCSW, TEP
There is psychodrama, and there is sociodrama. Sociodrama is the less-known method of the two action methods, although it offers great opportunities for action explorations in many settings.
In psychodrama, we explore a personal issue; for instance, the protagonist, as the client is called, may wish to look at a difficult relationship with a boyfriend, a long-standing conflict with mother, a repeated nightmare or a rehearsal to ask the boss for a raise. The idea is to address a personal problem with the help of “auxiliaries,” the other group members, to enact the roles in the drama to arrive at a conclusion that feels enlightening, satisfying and healing.
In sociodrama, there is no protagonist. Instead, the group identifies a social or cultural issue of common interest and each person in the group takes and plays out a role that relates to the issue or problem.
Psychology Arts, a project initiated by the delightful and inventive Azizi Marshall of The Center for Creative Arts Therapy in Chicago, Ill., recently interviewed Karen Carnabucci, founder of the Lancaster School of Psychodrama and Experiential Psychotherapies. Here is a transcript of that interview:
What do you do? Who do you help?
I use and teach psychodrama and other experiential methods that support people in rehearsing new roles and discovering new dimensions within themselves -- leading to more satisfying lives. With carefully directed experiences -- with both psychodrama and the newer Family Constellations – we are literally able to shift the molecules in our beings into embracing new realities.
I especially enjoy working with psychotherapists, educators and other helping professionals who want to learn these methods to integrate into their own work. For this reason, I've founded the Lancaster School of Psychodrama and Experiential Psychotherapies in Lancaster, Pa.
Karen Carnabucci, LCSW, TEP, is an author, trainer and psychotherapist who promotes, practices and teaches experiential methods including psychodrama, Family and Systemic Constellations, sand tray, mindfulness and Tarot imagery.
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