#56 – Psychodrama in the Criminal Justice System with Clark Baim PhD

Clark Baim PhD is a Psychotherapist and Psycho-dramatist with over twenty years’ experience.  Much of his career has been working with prisoners in the criminal justice system. Clark is the Co-Director of the Birmingham Institute for Psychodrama and Senior Trainer with the British Psychodrama Association.

In his early 20’s Clark accepted an acting contract with the Geese Theatre Company (US) which involved performing in prisons across the country.  At the time Clark was convinced this would be the best acting education he could get.  Not only were his expectations met, but he developed what would become a lifelong passion for changing lives through performance.  An entrepreneur at heart, in his mid 20’s Clark moved to the UK and started Geese Theatre UK.  He then began a 6 year psychodrama degree.  Geese Theatre continues to employ applied drama as a therapy tool within the criminal justice system and Clark remains a member of the board.  In subsequent years, Clark worked for HM Prison Grendon as a group psychotherapist, prior to becoming the Co-Lead National Trainer for Sexual Offending Treatment Programmes offered by the English and Welsh Probation Service.

In more recent times, Clark has focussed on attachment theory and specifically the Dynamic-Maturational Model (abbreviated as ‘DMM’) of Attachment, developed by Dr. Patricia Crittenden.  Clark co-developed the five stages therapeutic interviewing model based on the DMM with Tony Morrison. Together, Tony and Clarke co-wrote Attachment-based Practice with Adults: Understanding Strategies and Promoting Positive Change, which was published in 2011 by Pavilion, UK.

Clark has also co-edited several books and written multiple academic chapters and articles on ‘attachment theory’, ‘offender treatment’ and group-work methods and practices.

Clark recently completed his PhD thesis which explored the theory, ethics and practice of using traumatic personal narratives on the stage. It is a form of theatre which is becoming increasingly widespread internationally, where, for example, performers will present aspects of their life stories in dramatic form. Very often, these focus on experiences that have left them traumatised. As part of his research, he drew on his experience as a psychodrama psychotherapist and developed a model of safe practice, called the Drama Spiral, which is already being used by performers, theatre facilitators and theatre producers to promote safe practice in the theatre when personal stories are used.

Clark is a speaker and trainer in demand and regularly travels the world including Australia.

Clark's Self-Care Tip

Downtime is important. Spend time with friends and family!

One bit of advice

Challenge dogma – come with an attitude of asking the questions. For example, “Why do you have that as an assumption?” “Where's the evidence for that”.   Remember to question dogma!!!

Feedback

Please leave Clark Baim or myself a comment or some feedback, we’d love to hear from you and I’ll respond to everyone!

Amy Felman

Amy Felman

Amy has a Masters in Clinical Psychology from Deakin University and is a working psychologist. She also has a Bachelor of Arts (Media Studies) where she majored in radio. Amy is the host of the "We All Wear It Differently" podcast, where she hopes to entertain and inspire her fellow psychologists.
Amy Felman

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