Relational Cultural Theory On Social Work Practice Essay

1654 Words Dec 14th, 2014 null Page
Introduction Social work and its professionals are constantly assessing and reassessing practices, models, and therapies to ensure the client 's service needs are met and that they are treated justly and with dignity. Jean Baker Miller found traditional theories of behavior to be lacking emphasis and recognition of relational experiences, especially when pertaining to minority groups, and how these relational experiences impact individual 's mental wellbeing. Thus, she and several of her colleagues developed the relational cultural theory. This paper will highlight the core concepts of relational cultural theory, as well as its correlation to the core values of social work and health as a human right. I will also critical assess the theory and examine the effectiveness the theory has on social work practice.
Fundamentals of Relational Cultural Theory Relational cultural theory relies on the assumption that human beings develop relationships throughout their lives, and these relationships are necessary in order to mature and extend their relational and psychological selves. Relationships are flexible and in a constant state of movement toward or away from connections and disconnections. Connections in a relationship are positive and require mutual empathy, mutual empowerment and authenticity from all participants, while disconnections lack all of the former; they also create feelings of shame, humiliation and isolation. Walker suggested that relational movements are…

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