Day 1 :
GGZ Group, The Netherlands
Keynote: Healing power of awareness
Time : 10:00 AM-10:40 AM
Willem Fonteijn is a clinical psychologist. He published more than 20 papers in reputed journals and has been serving as a trainer for CBT. He is an enthusiastic mindfulness practitioner and works and lives in Amsterdam.
In psychotherapy, awareness is the major ingredient for sustainable and beneficial change. Clients are trained to become aware of their feelings and (hidden) thoughts. By doing so clients learn how to make better decisions and to cope with dysfunctional beliefs and emotions. For all of this awareness is the key ingredient. The conditioned mind is not able to observe anything other than its own routine and habits. If a problem is raised the mind wants to solve it in a routine way. We need awareness to step out of the routine of the mind. By observing what is happening from moment to moment in a neutral way, we open up to new aspects of our environment and ourselves. By doing so we allow beneficial change to happen.
University of Calgary, USA
Time : 10:40 AM-11:20 AM
Professor Clement Martini is an award-winning playwright, novelist, and screenwriter with over thirty plays, and twelve books of fiction and nonfiction to his credit, including the Award-winning Bitter Medicine: A Graphic Memoir of Mental Illness, and the recently released The Unravelling. His texts on playwriting are employed widely at universities and colleges. He currently teaches in the School of Creative and Performing Arts at the University of Calgary.
It’s my intention to chronicle the events leading to the 1796 founding of the seminal psychiatric facility, the Retreat, and the subsequent events that spurred the 1814 British parliamentary inquiry into asylums and on the basis of this research to create a historical novel. Employing materials drawn from the letters, journals, diaries and case notes of those working at and residing in the Retreat and the York Lunatic Asylum, as well as additional data collected from the archives of other contemporary asylums, including letters and journal entries of patients, I will reconstruct a plausible narrative that forefronts the lives and perspectives of those patients in care. This project, once completed, will correct a significant historical lapse, both in the material sense of providing information that is largely unrecognized, as well as in terms of voicing a perspective that is sadly absent. In every narrative of the Retreat, there is an element that is almost entirely missing from the historical record, and that is the perspective of the patient. What information exists about the Retreat, privileges the creator of the caregiving facility, William Tuke, and all but ignores patients except by representing them as the fortunate recipients of his attention. This tendency – to favor the perceptions of the institutional founders, doctors and medical experts of the time over those suffering from a mental illness - is true of the vast majority of what passes for a recorded history of mental illness and its treatment.