By Dennie Briggs
Starting with their first assembly in 1956 and finishing with Maxwell Jones' demise in 1990, A existence good Lived follows the expansion of a friendship among key figures in social psychiatry and tracks the evolution of healing groups from their experimental beginnings to the demonstrated practices that exist this day. As an in depth buddy and widespread collaborator, Briggs is ready to recount intimately Jones' progressive paintings in psychological hospitals, prisons, groups and colleges, and gives an extraordinary and interesting perception into the brain of 1 of crucial pioneers within the healing group box.
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Extra info for A Life Well Lived: Maxwell Jones - A Memoir (Community, Culture and Change)
He got married to one of the social therapists (Kerstin, a young woman from Sweden). Then our mutual friend and colleague, Harry Wilmer, arranged a visiting professorship for him at Stanford for a year. And so Max packed his bags and moved to California, a fortunate event for both of us. My own circumstances had also changed. During the latter part of my two years in Japan, I had been thinking about getting out of the Navy. I had been in the service now for over nine years and I’d had some very stimulating and fulfilling times.
The radicals I’d hoped to see along the streets were nowhere to be found: it was still vacation time and another few weeks would pass before the Latin Quarter would take on its hectic atmosphere again. Then I journeyed to the south of France for the rest of the month. I phoned Max when I returned to London to tell him I was ready to go to work. ” On his advice, I broke my journey with an overnight stay in York. The city, he said, would prepare me for British culture. Perhaps after the free and easy life in Provence, even Paris would have seemed a bit confining; but the narrow twelfth-century streets of York were somber and containing.
I hadn’t been back since my first visit to Max (1956). I’d had a brief glimpse recently of European culture during one of Max’s visits, when he took me along to have lunch with Jurgen Ruesch and his wife in their San Francisco garden. The geniality of the company was deceptive because it was based on a formality whose grace and calm seemed so natural as to be spontaneous. Yet I knew Max well enough to spot the telltale signs of British noblesse oblige. And although they never made me in any way feel a bumpkin, I was aware of my ignorance of social etiquette.