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Narrative Medicine Rounds: Celebrating the Book “Narrative in Social Work Practice”


Dec 06, 2017 - 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.


Faculty Club of Columbia University Medical Center, Physicians & Surgeons Building, 630 W. 168th St., 4th Floor, New York, NY

For our December Narrative Medicine Rounds, we celebrate the extraordinary book Narrative in Social Work Practice: The Power and Possibility of Story by Ann Burack-Weiss, Lynn Sara Lawrence, and Lynne Bamat Mijangos, editors. The book features first-person accounts by social workers who have successfully integrated narrative theory and approaches into their practice. Contributors describe innovative interventions with a wide range of individuals, families, and groups facing a variety of life challenges. One author describes a family in crisis when a promising teenage girls suddenly takes to her bed for several years; another brings narrative practice to a Bronx trauma center; and another finds that poetry writing can enrich the lives of people living with dementia.

In some chapters, the authors turn narrative techniques inward and use them as vehicles of self discovery. Throughout, Narrative in Social Work Practice showcases the flexibility and appeal of narrative methods and demonstrates how they can be empowering and fulfilling for clients and social workers alike.

In the forward of the book, Rita Charon, Founder and Executive Director of Columbia’s Narrative Medicine Program, writes, “This book can transform social work practice. It is both revolutionary in concept and loyal to social work traditions in spirit. It illuminates the social and personal dimensions that attract social workers to their work in the first place and proposes innovative ideas and methods that keep the practice forever new.”

Ann Burack-Weiss taught for thirty years at the Columbia University School of Social Work and is now associate faculty in Columbia’s Program in Narrative Medicine. She is the author of The Caregiver’s Tale: Loss and Renewal in Family Life (Columbia, 2006) and The Lioness in Winter: Writing an Old Woman’s Life (Columbia, 2015).

Lynn Sara Lawrence is a practicing psychotherapist in New York City. She has taught at the New York School for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis, and has contributed to Smith College Studies in Social Work and Psychoanalytic Social Work.

Lynne Bamat Mijangos is practicum supervisor for the Program in Narrative Medicine at Columbia University. She is the author of Baby Girl Mijangos (2004) and is a contributor to Virginia Woolf Miscellany.

Narrative Medicine Rounds are lectures or readings presented by scholars, clinicians, or writers engaged in work at the intersection of narrative and health care. Rounds are held on the first Wednesday of each month during the Spring and Fall terms from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. and are followed by a reception. Rounds are free and open to the public; no RSVP is necessary. Students, staff, faculty, patients, friends, and interested others are warmly welcome to attend.


Ann Burack-Weiss, Associate Faculty, Narrative Medicine Program, Columbia University
Lynn Sara Lawrence, Psychotherapist
Lynne Bamat Mijangos, Practicum Supervisor, Narrative Medicine Program, Columbia University