Critical Methods Nine: Trauma in context




Previous conferences

31 Aug - 2 Sept 2004, ICC, Durban, South Africa

In 2004 the annual Critical Methods conference explored critical approaches to psychological trauma and victim empowerment. It was hosted by Themba Lesizwe as part of their annual conference which gathers together a wide range of organisations involved with trauma services and victim empowerment. The joint aim was to bring together academics, researchers and community based workers in conceptualizing and developing appropriate services in this area.

The conference was well attended, both by those primarily there for the critical methods stream and by those who were there for the larger conference. Below is the call for papers.

Trauma provides a vital concept for critical psychology, clearly linking social problems with subjective experience. It can allow us to document the psychological consequences of socially embedded forms of violence and exclusion, including problems such as violent crime, sexual violence, xenophobia, racism, poverty and the HIV/AIDS epidemic. We also need to research the specifics of local experiences and interventions in the context of complex cultural differences and the limited resources available to most community based organisations. In addition there should be critical reflection on the trauma industry itself: the identities it produces, the forms of thinking it allows and those it stifles, the social relations it creates and sustains. The conference aims to bring together critical research and theoretical work relating to these issues.

See also the conference programme and the list of abstracts. For more information contact Anthony Collins at: collinsa at or (031) 260-2539 for more details

Some useful links

Critical Methods Collective 

Themba Lesizwe

International Convention Centre, Durban

A paper by Brandon Hamber - The Impact of Trauma: A psychosocial approach