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Empathy for the Devil: How to Help People Overcome Drugs and Alcohol Problems Paperback – 23 Feb 2007


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Product details

  • Paperback: 217 pages
  • Publisher: Russell House Publishing Ltd; illustrated edition edition (23 Feb. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1903855543
  • ISBN-13: 978-1903855546
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 17.1 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 364,465 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

"I thoroughly enjoyed this book, it is a great read. Harris discusses the complexity of drug and alcohol problems with more references to cultural and social aspects than previous work that I have read in this area. I found his account of the involvement and hypocrisy of the American government in relation to drugs particularly interesting. The focus of the book is explicitly and empathically on helping clients to establish and achieve their own goals to overcome their addiction. However Harris does not treat people as living in a vacuum, but as living within and being part of an extremely influential cultural context. I particularly enjoyed Harris's astute reflections upon the therapeutic relationship, something not always talked about, and found the chapter on solution-focused therapy so inspiring that I wanted to rush out and try it." --The Psychologist

"Book of the month... his bibliography makes for extensive further reading." --Drugscope Members Briefing

"I thoroughly enjoyed this book, it is a great read. Harris discusses the complexity of drug and alcohol problems with more references to cultural and social aspects than previous work that I have read in this area. I found his account of the involvement and hypocrisy of the American government in relation to drugs particularly interesting. The focus of the book is explicitly and empathically on helping clients to establish and achieve their own goals to overcome their addiction. However Harris does not treat people as living in a vacuum, but as living within and being part of an extremely influential cultural context. I particularly enjoyed Harris's astute reflections upon the therapeutic relationship, something not always talked about, and found the chapter on solution-focused therapy so inspiring that I wanted to rush out and try it." --The Psychologist

"Examining the core skills necessary for effecting change in problematic substance users, this book explores practical ways of establishing or improving practice. It steps beyond clinical, theoretical and moral undertones to the reality of working with substance misuse and offers positive and reflective support for both experienced and novice workers, as well as bringing together a wide range of proven skills in supporting people through change, and illuminating key ideas and techniques." --Human Givens Journal

"The author has taken on a huge brief and attempted it bravely... a useful book to dip into... a valuable snapshot of the zeitgeist in drugs work and drug users... what it sets out to do, it accomplishes well." --Therapy Today

About the Author

Phil Harris is an independent writer who has worked in direct access drug services for over fifteen years. He has designed and delivered internationally recognised treatment programmes and accredited training courses throughout the UK & Europe. Having worked as a drugs treatment advisor to DST's, Criminal Justice Services and Youth Services, he has also managed several organisations and implemented innovative, practical and effective approaches to addressing people's problems with misuse of drugs and alcohol. He continues to practice in the south west of England.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By S. BAXTER on 10 April 2007
Format: Paperback
One only has to spend any time in the vaults of any university library to be aware of wealth of books available to those of us who work in the drug and alcohol field. Though it does not take too long to know that beneath optimistic back cover descriptions and front covers seemingly designed by the daughters of Achelous, there lies much theorising, with little attention given to the actual practicalities of rolling out effective interventions for the client group specific to us.

In Empathy for the Devil Phil Harris does exactly what he says on the cover "How to help people overcome drugs and alcohol problems".

In my role as a senior practitioner for a criminal justice drugs service, and as a student in the field of substance use and misuse, I regularly dip my toes in to the ponds of knowledge in an attempt to find that "perfect hit". A book which nails the process from first smile to last handshake, with clients who are experiencing problematic substance misuse.

I have at last found that "perfect hit".

Phil does an exceptional job at setting the stage for change in the context of evidence based theories, which when married up with the right worker with the right heart and mind for this work, will be able to effect change in a population otherwise excluded from any hope or resigned to the vaults of pharmacological interventions until they take their last breath.

Phil's book should now become the new standard for workers seeking guidance on working in this field, and I have no doubt that once the accolade of praise dulls to a dull roar that many will agree.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Sally Rogerson on 13 April 2009
Format: Paperback
I can't recommend this book highly enough for those training to be addictions counsellors! It includes every area of work AND is readable and, dare I say, even entertaining!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The concepts within this book will be of use to anyone who works with substance misusers. Its thorough, rigorous and offers a genuinely new perspective on addictions.
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