Many at Collington have had a major impact on thinking in their fields. I had not till now realized the impact that “our” Denny Kass has had on the field of bereavement studies. As the extract from the forward, written by professor Neil Thompson, at Wrexham Glyndwr University, for a new book Denny has co-authored states:
In the 20 years after Dennis Klass, Phyllis Silverman, and Steven Nickman introduced the concept into bereavement studies in Continuing Bonds: New Understandings of Grief, continuing bonds went from being dismissed and pathologized to being a fully recognized and accepted phenomenon in bereavement scholarship and practice. Indeed, continuing bonds can now be seen not just as a phenomenon in grief but as a way of characterizing and expanding on grief itself.
The concept of continuing bonds allows us to enrich therapeutic techniques that help the bereaved, to expand our ability to understand bereavement in other cultures, to focus the philosophic questions in bereavement studies, to transfer what we learn about bereavement to how we study other significant losses, as well as to begin to include a wider range of academic disciplines in the study of grief.
Contributors in Continuing Bonds in Bereavement: New Directions for Research and Practice provide a comprehensive overview of developments in the two decades after its inception. Clinically-based contributors show psychological counseling can be more effective when continuing bonds are included. Other chapters report on grief in different cultural settings, open the discussion about the truth and reality of our interactions with the dead, and show how new cultural developments like social media change the ways we relate to those who have died. . . .
In sum, in Continuing Bonds in Bereavement, Klass and Steffen offer a sweeping and substantial successor to the pioneering volume that initiated a paradigm shift in the study of grief and its therapeutic implications, consolidating a perspective that is likely to remain ascendant as the field of bereavement matures
While Denny developed these approaches before coming to Collington, the resonace with repect to the values and approach of our cmmunity is obvious. Here we create bonds in a network, and nurture them when the network suffers a gash. Smething to think about as we move forward with the relevant elements in our Strategic Plan.
The book is titled Continuing Bonds in Bereavement: New Directions for Research and Practice, Edited by Dennis Klass and Edith Maria Steffen. Here is the Amazon link.