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MINDFULNESS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE APPROACHES: Bridging the Mind and Society in Social Work Practice

Steven F. Hick and Charles R. Furlotte
Canadian Social Work Review / Revue canadienne de service social
Vol. 26, No. 1 (2009), pp. 5-24
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/41669899
Page Count: 20
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
MINDFULNESS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE APPROACHES: Bridging the Mind and Society in Social Work Practice
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Abstract

The authors offer a preliminary exploration of the theory underlying the ways in which mindfulness might be incorporated into social justice approaches to social work (such as structural, critical, and anti-oppressive social work) as a method to link the personal and political in direct practice. Mindfulness may provide a window for observing and investigating events in our everyday lives that can inform, while also being structured by, larger social relations and structures. Mindfulness and social justice approaches to social work theory, in particular critical social science theory, converge around the ideas of social relations, dialectics, consciousness, and self-reflection or reflexivity. There are tensions, however, and further development is needed of a social work practice that incorporates knowledge from both mindfulness and social justice approaches. Les auteurs font une première exploration de la théorie sous-tendant les moyens possibles d'intégrer la pleine conscience du moment présent aux approches de justice sociale en travail social (comme le travail social structurel, critique et anti-oppressif) comme méthode de conjugaison du personnel et du politique dans l'exercice direct de la profession. La pleine conscience du moment présent peut servir de fenêtre d'observation et d'investigation d'événements du quotidien susceptibles de nous éclairer tout en étant construite par de plus vastes relations et structures sociales. La pleine conscience du moment présent et les approches de justice sociale à la théorie du service social, en particulier la théorie critique des sciences sociales, gravitent autour des notions de relations sociales, de dialectique, de prise de conscience et d'autoréflexion ou réflexivité. Il y a toutefois des tensions et il faut continuer à travailler au développement d'un service social intégrant la connaissance issue tant de la pleine conscience du moment présent que des approches de justice sociale.

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