Bibliotherapy (also referred to as book therapy, poetry therapy or therapeutic storytelling) is a creative arts therapies modality that involves storytelling or the reading of specific texts with the purpose of healing. It is a versatile and cost-effective treatment option often adapted or used to supplement other types of therapy. Proponents of the approach suggest mild to moderate symptoms of several mood-related conditions can be successfully treated with reading activities.
The first use of the term is usually dated to a jaunty 1916 article in The Atlantic Monthly, “A Literary Clinic.” In it, the author describes stumbling upon a “bibliopathic institute” run by an acquaintance, Bagster, in the basement of his church, from where he dispenses reading recommendations with healing value. “Bibliotherapy is…a new science,” Bagster explains. “A book may be a stimulant or a sedative or an irritant or a soporific. The point is that it must do something to you, and you ought to know what it is. A book may be of the nature of a soothing syrup or it may be of the nature of a mustard plaster.” (Taken from the New Yorker article).
Nitin Goel, who is starting his new Channel on Mentza today will be reading the above article (posted in 2015) today at 22:00 IST. You can join the circle by clicking here. His project bibliotherapy is something he started during the lockdown and his goal is to nudge people to read more.
Nitin and Uday Kiran spoke about their love for reading and also about Nitin’s ‘sanity project’ in the conversation below.
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