Flowing towards freedom with multimodal creative therapy : the healing power of therapeutic arts for ex cult-members

Parsons, AS ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3540-5660, Turner, R, Ingleton, H, Kefalogianni, M, Omylinska-Thurston, J ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8329-171X, Karkou, V, Thurston, SD ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5326-593X and Dubrow-Marshall, LJ ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4092-6599 2021, 'Flowing towards freedom with multimodal creative therapy : the healing power of therapeutic arts for ex cult-members' , The Arts in Psychotherapy, 72 , p. 101743.

PDF - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives 4.0.

Download (670kB) | Preview


Creative arts can play an important role for cult survivors in surviving, transcending and healing from their past realities. Flow – an empowering state of mind-body integration and skilful, intuitive action while engaged in a challenging yet enjoyable task (Csikszentmihalyi, 1997) – may be an important mechanism in arts therapies and may be especially impactful as an experience for cult survivors. Research reporting on arts therapies for cult survivors, Flow in cult survivors and Flow in arts therapies is currently severely lacking. This study reports on a multimodal creative psychological therapy, Arts for the Blues, piloted as a workshop with a small group of cult survivors. Results obtained from three participants show that they experienced Flow in their creative activities and increased attainment in a self-selected personal goal. Interviews with two participants reveal important considerations for working with cult survivors, the healing power of the arts, the attainment of Flow states in the process, and the impact of the Arts for the Blues approach. This study is the first of its kind to trial art therapies with ex cult-members, or to document participants’ views on Flow states during an arts therapy approach. Although limited by a small sample size, further research is warranted.

Item Type: Article
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society > Centre for Health Sciences Research
Journal or Publication Title: The Arts in Psychotherapy
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0197-4556
Related URLs:
Funders: University of Salford Early Career Funding
Depositing User: J Omylinska-Thurston
Date Deposited: 07 Dec 2020 15:19
Last Modified: 03 Jun 2022 02:30
URI: https://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/58988

Actions (login required)

Edit record (repository staff only) Edit record (repository staff only)


Downloads per month over past year