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An exploration of a holistic approach to counselling psychology integrating mind, body and spirit

Nyangereka, Michelle (2015). An exploration of a holistic approach to counselling psychology integrating mind, body and spirit. (Unpublished Doctoral thesis, City University London)


Multiple studies on the topic of intergenerational transmission of trauma (IGTT) have been carried out internationally in various contexts; however little is known about IGTT in the context of the Idi Amin regime in Uganda. The present study explored the outcomes and mechanisms via which the trauma of one generation who lived through Idi Amin’s regime impacted the subsequent generation. Using an Interpretative Phenomenological Approach (IPA), this study investigated the subjective experiences, beliefs and perceptions of six Ugandans now based in the UK, whose parents lived in Uganda under Idi Amin’s military rule. Five superordinate themes were identified: 1. “Family dynamics” which described the family system as the place in which the parents’ trauma was seeded and the effects of their trauma were experienced; “Absence and loss” which highlighted the traumatic events and negative outcomes of the trauma such as psychological absence and death; “Sense making as a process” which included participants’ more positive interpretations of their experiences such as making meaning through suffering and gaining strength from their difficulties; “The dynamic nature of memories and remembering” highlighted dynamic interaction of the participants with the narrative of their traumatic experiences and ability to reframe them; and “The individuation process” which explored the impact that the participants experiences had on their adult life. The findings are discussed in terms of the existing theories on IGTT and implications for practice are explored, including a recommendation for a multilevel framework considering the family and community-societal levels, and a holistic approach to trauma treatment which integrates the mind, body and spirit.

Publication Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Psychology
Doctoral Theses
School of Health & Psychological Sciences > School of Health & Psychological Sciences Doctoral Theses
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