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Therapeutic communities and group analysis

Jan Lees (Nottingham, UK)
Rex Haigh (Institute of Mental Health, School of Sociology and Social Policy, Nottingham University, Nottingham, UK)
Sarah Tucker (Institute of Group Analysis, London UK)

Therapeutic Communities: The International Journal of Therapeutic Communities

ISSN: 0964-1866

Article publication date: 12 June 2017




The purpose of this paper is to highlight theoretical and clinical similarities between therapeutic communities (TCs) and group analysis (GA).


Literature review shows comparison of TC and group-analytic concepts with illustrative case material.


Findings reveal many similarities between TCs and GA, but also significant divergences, particularly in practice.

Practical implications

This paper provides theoretical basis for TC practice, and highlights the need for greater theorising of TC practice.

Social implications

This paper highlights the importance of group-based treatment approaches in mental health.


This is the first paper to review the relevant literature and compare theory and practice in TCs and GA, highlighting their common roots in the Northfields Experiments in the Second World War.



Lees, J., Haigh, R. and Tucker, S. (2017), "Therapeutic communities and group analysis", Therapeutic Communities: The International Journal of Therapeutic Communities, Vol. 38 No. 2, pp. 87-107.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited

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