Reviewed with Therapeutic Communities: Past, Present and Future by Penelope Campling and Rex Haigh 'The book is thoughtfully written, covering the arguments which have been put for and against therapeutic communities (do they liberate their clients or brainwash them?) and detailing core concepts and practices. Some therapeutic community variations are explained, especially the major differences between the democratic model, used mainly for personality disorder, and the concept-based model, aimed at drug abusers. The first edition has become an authoritative text, widely cited and accessible to lay and professional readers alike; this version looks set to continue that role.'
The strength of his account is its honesty and the relevance of this approach to multi-agency and de-institutionalised mental health services.
Mental Health Care
Kennard discusses the key issues of therapeutic communities and applies them to everyday situations: not just to the psychiatric arena, but to management, social life and general health care. The book's major strength lies in its succinct illustration of the critical importance of the interplay between the individual and the wider community. It does not have that evangelical quality of some texts; Rather, this is a rational, objective analysis of psychiatric intervention using therapeutic communities as a focus. Enlightening for those new to psychiatry, I would recommend it to experienced mental health workers too.