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ISBN: 978-0-19-530661-3. 2008. Item #O6613. 2208 pages. Hardcover. 4-Volume Set.
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Hardcopy Version - Sold HerePublished in 2008, the hardcover version of the Encyclopedia of Social Work contains over 400 articles. The 4-volume set covers all aspects of social work, from practice and interventions, social environments, social conditions and challenges, to social policy and history.
The Encyclopedia includes coverage of areas that came to the fore since the 1995 publication of the 19th edition, including demographic changes from immigration, technology, the implications of managed care, faith-based assistance, evidence-based practice, gerontology, and trauma and disaster. Each thoughtful article is written and signed by a top academic or social work practitioner and includes a bibliography for further reading. For even further ease of use, all volumes are fully cross-referenced and includes a complete Index.
This convenient and authoritative core reference work is an essential tool for fact-finding, studying for licensing exams, supplementing course work, initiating literature searches, and supporting practice decisions. The Encyclopedia presents an in-depth look at the ever-changing field of social work. The foundation of any social work collection, the Encyclopedia will be a treasured addition to the library of practitioner, scholar, and student alike.
- Co-published by The National Association of Social Workers and Oxford University Press
- Complete A-Z coverage of the field of social work--international in scope--both in coverage and authorship
- 400 subject entries written by leading scholars in the field
- 300 brief biographies of key figures in the history of social work
- Each article fully cross-referenced
- Each entry contains a bibliography for further reading
- Easy-to-use Index
The enduring profession of social work is now in its second century. Grounded in core
values, it has withstood major political, social, and economic changes over time. The
scope of its knowledge and skill continues to grow as the profession responds to
developing needs in the United States and all over the world. Many social workers are in
the forefront, shaping public policies, advancing client interventions, and influencing
We proudly present Encyclopedia of Social Work, twentieth edition, built upon the
legacy of scholarship from former editors and authors. This edition has been transformed
by twenty-first century technology and information inside and outside the field. As
editors in chief, our responsibility was to circumscribe the knowledge base of our
profession as enormous changes have reshaped the world’s political, social, and
economic order since the nineteenth edition. It has been a daunting challenge and a
privilege to present social work knowledge, competencies, and values to the world. This
edition represents an exponential growth in the content of our profession and in the
methods of delivering that content to its audience. It has grown from three to four
volumes, and includes many new, innovative as well as updated entries. For the first time,
it is being produced by a partnership of the NASW Press and Oxford University Press. It
will be available to the social work and other interested communities in hard copy and in
The Encyclopedia conveys the breadth and depth of the profession’s collective
expertise. It has been formulated and written by social workers from many backgrounds and
competencies. Encompassing diversity in subject matter and authorship, it includes the
best thinking, evidence, and practice wisdom translated into the best writing. While it is
written for predominantly professional audiences, we have striven to make it accessible to
both students and scholars, and useful to practitioners and policymakers.
The entries reflect the composite perspective of the United States while taking into
account an increasingly international audience of social workers in academic, policy, and
practice settings. All contributors were given a difficult and challenging set of
requirements. Within a limited wordcount, they were asked to address several thematic
areas for ‘‘infusion’’ into their entries. These include: historical
foundations, contemporary issues and practice dimensions, multicultural perspectives, the
latest theoretical foundations and research findings, and emerging trends and directions.
We suggested they pay attention to the works or impact of other disciplines. They were
also asked to include the latest and best interventions, methodologies, and techniques,
and to highlight any ethical issues as well as challenges or debates related to the topic.
They were guided by the question: What do social workers need to know or what is the
relevance of your subject area to social workers? Many entries end with the roles and
implications for social workers at the micro and macro levels.
The Context and Conditions
The first seven years of the twenty-first century have included some of the most
far-reaching and even cataclysmic changes for the United States and the world. The
millennium dawned in the context of globalization and interconnectedness, war, worldwide
poverty, AIDS, and a variety of racial, ethnic, religious, and tribal conflicts in many
parts of the world. This is the era when genetic codes were broken, genes mapped, and the
cloning of animals and stem cells occurred amidst celebration and fear.
The United States went from unprecedented economic growth and surpluses to deficits and
downsizing, and devolution from federal to state responsibility. Social programs have
witnessed a continuing shift from public to private sector influence on health, education,
and human services. A politically and economically conservative agenda has been dominant.
And in addressing health and social problems, the first administration of the twenty-first
century has emphasized the role of faith-based organizations and volunteerism as well as
market-based solutions known as privatization.
The effects of the events of September 11, 2001, remain profound. The attacks on the
United States resulted in the deaths of thousands of innocent people and precipitated an
aggressive global ‘‘war on terror’’ conducted by the United States in
Afghanistan and Iraq with a massive amount of resources, manpower, and money. They are
still shaping the role of and funding for social work and social services as well as the
attitudes toward many of the people we serve. There are fewer dollars to cope with greater
social problems, but social workers are more active than ever on the national, state, and
local political scenes. By 2000, there were six social workers in the U.S. Congress; after
the 2006 midterm congressional elections, there were ten: two senators and eight members
of the House of Representatives, in addition to hundreds of social workers serving in
public office at the state and local levels.
As the United States becomes increasingly multicultural, a virulent anti-immigrant
sentiment has risen dramatically. As science and technology discover myriad new ways to
prevent and treat diseases and disability, there has been ideological resistance to
embryonic stem cell research and alternative measures to alleviate pain. As evidence-based
practice becomes increasingly important, there are many examples of political
considerations trumping hard data. Social workers are more active than ever in attempting
to shape the public research agenda to include the social and environmental factors
affecting human behavior. At the same time, the corporate sector has attempted to control
professional behavior through managed care and behavioral health contracting. Some who
support faith-based initiatives minimize the need and value of professionally trained
experts. This is the complex and rapidly changing scenario full of contradictions and
tensions in which the future of social work is embedded.
The major social work professional organization, the National Association of Social
Workers, continues to develop its programs, policies, and practice standards. Yet
challenges remain. The good news is that all fifty states have achieved some form of
social work licensing and public recognition. But the bad news is that there have been
divisions within the profession over the types and levels of licensure, continuing low
salaries and job stresses, and competition from other professions for limited positions.
And the social justice and antidiscrimination values that have been the underpinning of
the NASW Code of Ethics, the foundation for the profession, have come under attack by some
To address these concerns, there have been major developments over the past few years
to bring the diverse social work organizations together to collaborate on common agendas
and the future direction of the profession. In 2002, the NASW convened a Social Work
Summit, bringing forty-three different organizations together to begin a process of
communication and cooperation. In 2005, a pioneering Social Work Congress was held in
Washington, D.C., in which over three hundred social work leaders participated. It
established twelve priorities for the next ten years. By 2007, the major social work
organizations were on the path to consolidation by 2012. These moves toward a more unified
profession, along with a national public education campaign spearheaded by NASW, could
strengthen and expand its influence, recognition, and public support.
The Intellectual and Technical Production of the Twentieth Edition
For us, as the editors in chief, the starting point was to identify sixteen area
editors from a very talented pool of qualified social workers. We are proud of the team we
chose. They were selected for their wisdom, intellectual rigor, experience, and mastery
over specific scholarly domains. They accepted a daunting challenge: that of producing and
compiling what would be the major representation of our collective knowledge for the next
decade. Their combined wealth of expertise helped conceptualize the major frameworks of
the profession. Fourteen such thematic areas evolved: stages of the life span; components
of human need; fields of practice; settings and service systems; population groups (by
race, ethnicity, gender, age, and sexual orientation); social problem areas; methods of
practice intervention; social work curriculum components (for example, research, policy,
human behavior, and the social environment); the social profession; social welfare policy
and history; social justice; technology; international and comparative perspectives; and
special topics (economics; law; arts and culture). While the entries are listed
alphabetically, each of them falls under one or more of these topical headings.
There are almost four hundred entries with 437 authors of enormous talent and
diversity. The challenge of establishing a balance for each of the areas and their
respective articles was formidable. For example, how much basic or general versus specific
or specialized knowledge should be included? How much content from outside the United
States should be included? How much standardization of entries versus creativity to allow?
How should we gear the quality and detail to a multilevel group of readers? And should we
use current accepted terminology or ‘‘cutting-edge’’ language of that
specialty, such as ‘‘learning disability’’ versus
The content of the twentieth edition reflects the changes related to the social work
community nationally and internationally over the past decade. We asked the critical
question: What are the new and expanded content areas reflected in the various entries?
Our tasks are more challenging today in part because of the complexity of the social
problems in which our profession is engaged. We cannot always conduct the type of studies
or evaluate interventions that could produce more definitive evidence because of ethical,
funding, and political obstacles. We are obligated to protect human subjects. We are often
engaged with unpopular causes, marginalized populations, and intransigent social
conditions that are not easily fundable. But we are always searching to demonstrate that
social workers ‘‘know something’’ and, more importantly, to explain
how we know it. As social workers, we are addressing our rationale for
‘‘doing.’’ We strongly believe that a value base must underpin the
knowledge and skill base. To borrow a phrase from the famous American sociologist, Robert
Lynd: ‘‘Knowledge for what?’’
There are many important ways in which the twentieth edition has evolved. From nine
overview entries in the nineteenth edition, there are now thirty-nine entries, explaining
either a major framework or content area. Among them are:
‘‘Contexts/Settings’’ (for social work practice); ‘‘Human
Needs’’, under which there are seven components; and
‘‘Lifespan’’ under which fall eight stages ranging from infancy to the
oldest seniors. There are also several overview articles on the various fields and
The topics of multiculturalism, cultural competence, and culturally competent practice
are all new, in addition to an expanded twenty-three entries on various racial and ethnic
groups. These include new topics on Arab Americans, South Asians, and Southeastern Asians.
Spirituality and faith-based subject matter have grown to include a range of services and
practices, including for the first time ‘‘Muslim Social Services.’’
While the Encyclopedia is a United States-based undertaking, we have increased the
contributions from and about the international community as a whole and its component
parts. From three entries in the nineteenth edition, there are fourteen entries in the
current edition. What is most innovative are the regional overviews written by one or more
authors from that part of the world: Africa (Sub-Sahara); Asia; Australia and the Pacific
Islands; the Caribbean; Central America and Mexico; Europe; the Middle East and North
Africa; North America (Canada and the United States); and South America. There are also
new entries on globalization, immigration and immigration policy, and displaced persons.
In addition, all authors were asked to include contributions from other countries and
international perspectives where relevant.
The topics under research methodologies and technology, advanced in the nineteenth
edition and its supplements, continue to explode. There are now twenty-five articles
including ‘‘Technology in Micro Practice’’ and ‘‘Technology
in Macro Practice’’ as well as ‘‘Research as a Practice
Intervention’’ and ‘‘Best Practice’’. Each entry, where
relevant, contains the latest research and best practices.
New and enlarged areas of practice as well as practice interventions were added,
including ‘‘Forensic Social Work’’,
‘‘Rehabilitation’’, ‘‘Urban Social Work’’, and
‘‘Trauma’’. In addition, there are several new entries related to
political themes: ‘‘Political Interventions’’, ‘‘Political
Process’’, and ‘‘Political Social Work’’. The field of
disability has also changed much since 1995. In addition to the overview entry, a range of
disabilities has been identified as the knowledge base and its application to practice
grow. Included among the new topics are articles on physical, psychiatric,
neuro-cognitive, and developmental disabilities. The related areas of mental health,
mental illness, and alcohol and drug problems have been expanded to go into more depth
about these prominent areas of social work practice and policy. Finally, genetics has been
updated to reflect the science and its implications for practice.
We have added to the section on social policy and social welfare four-fold, from two
entries on social welfare history and social welfare policy to an overview article and
then a series of articles on the history of social policy, from the colonial era through
the twentieth century, along with an entry on social welfare expenditures. The whole area
of social work education from the bachelors to the doctoral level has also expanded from
one to nine separate entries.
The expansion of practice methods and interventions at all levels reflects exciting
developments in the field. In addition to all the clinical areas, there are a range of new
methods and settings, including working with involuntary clients (authoritarian settings),
bereavement practice, interventions with couples, families, groups, and new entries
related to techniques such as psychodrama, psychoanalysis, psycho- education, and
compulsive behaviors. At the macro levels, there are additional components of community
and administrative/management practice. In particular, there is an increasing emphasis on
interorganizational and interdisciplinary practice as well as collaboration.
We have added forty social work luminaries to the Biography section, which includes
deceased social workers who had a significant national or international impact on the
profession or who had substantially shaped an area of practice or policy. We are happy to
honor the contributions of this special group in our Encyclopedia.
The Appendix ‘‘Distinctive Dates in Social Welfare History’’ has
been updated, expanded, and in a few instances, corrected. This is an important chronology
for understanding the place of social work and social welfare in the broader social
history of the United States and beyond.
And we are pleased to continue to include the current range of major social work
organizations which collectively present the entire social work community. This is
reflective of a kaleidoscope made up of the myriad interests and identities of our
profession. Together, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, and represents the
power of social work.
Our heartfelt appreciation to the Area Editors Paula Allen-Meares, Darlyne Bailey,
Elizabeth Clark, Diana Dinitto, Cynthia Franklin, Charles Garvin, Lorraine Gutierrez, Jan
Hagen, Yeheskel (Zeke) Hasenfeld, Shanti Khinduka, Ruth McRoy, James Midgley, John Orme,
Enola Proctor, Frederic Reamer, and Michael Sosin. They committed themselves to almost
three years of difficult work that included selecting the best authors for the entries in
their domain, critically reviewing and editing dozens of them, and in almost all cases,
authoring their own contribution. We applaud their dedication and determination to make
this Encyclopedia the most comprehensive and compelling tome yet.
We want to sincerely thank the hundreds of authors who contributed their time, wisdom,
and intellect to crafting these wonderful entries. It was tremendously rewarding to
validate the extent of our collective expertise, and to discover such a wealth of
qualified social workers who are leaders in their fields. Some are world-renowned and some
make their international debut through this work. We achieved our goal of having the
contributors with only a few exceptions come from within our social work community. And we
are extremely proud of the diversity of scholars in terms of gender, race, and ethnicity
writing on a broad range of important topics. Several of the authors come from other
countries Canada, Israel, Australia, and Ethiopia to name a few. These authors are a
combination of well-known scholars within the social work community and
‘‘newcomers’’ who are just beginning to receive national recognition
for their scholarship. They include a range of social work practitioners as well as
academic researchers. In many instances, collaborators with complementary backgrounds were
paired to enrich the entries.
Each entry went through at least three readings and revisions. We read and were
involved in the editing of the almost four hundred entries, after receiving feedback from
one or more area editors. We are extremely grateful for the talent of Julie Abramson and
Anthony Tripodi who joined our editorial team when we needed additional professional
assistance. And, finally, the skill, sensitivity, and sophistication exhibited by Oxford
University Press in dealing with the authors, area editors, and the editors in chief
cannot be overstated. The complexity of moving this massive enterprise forward with
efficiency while emphasizing quality and comprehensiveness represented a challenge to all
who were involved. Development Editor Eric Stannard and the staff of OUP kept the process
organized and coherent.
We also want to convey our admiration to the editors and authors of former editions of
the Encyclopedia. We are especially in awe of those professional leaders and scholars who
dedicated so much of their time, energy, and intellect to this enterprise with less and
less technology as we go back in time. It is hard to imagine orchestrating this project in
such a timely way without email, the Internet, and the computer; yet this was how the
earlier editions of the Encyclopedia were produced. And even the nineteenth edition had
limited access to online information and electronic communication tools. Not only has
communication technology enhanced the process of producing these volumes, but the product
itself has also been enriched. Readers of the twentieth edition now have access to
websites, web links, and publications online among the references and resources cited.
These of course can become outdated or unavailable over time, but overall they deepen and
extend the body of knowledge available to the audience.
We are confident that this enormous enterprise has produced a scholarly product that is
rich in its knowledge base and will be informative to all who are either studying or
practicing social work. We hope that all who read these entries will be informed, but also
that they will be stimulated to become more engaged and active as scholars, practitioners,
and critics. While we have completed our responsibilities, this master work will not be
the final product. To capture and reflect the knowledge base of social work will continue
as an everchanging and ever-expanding endeavor.
How to Use the Encyclopedia
There are nearly four hundred entries in Encyclopedia of Social Work, twentieth
edition, arranged in alphabetical order letter by letter. These are followed by almost two
hundred biographies of pioneers in the field of social work. The contributors have sought
to write in clear language with a minimum of technical vocabulary. A selective
bibliography at the end of each article directs the reader who wishes to pursue a topic in
greater detail to primary sources and the most important scholarly works, plus the most
useful works in English.
To guide readers from one article to related discussions elsewhere in the Encyclopedia, end-references appear at the end of many articles. There are crossreferences within the
body of a few articles. Blind entries direct the user from an alternate form of an entry
term to the entry itself. For example, the blind entry ‘‘Elderly
People’’ directs the reader to ‘‘See Aging.’’ At the end of
volume 4 the reader can find a topical outline (which shows how articles relate to one
another and to the overall design of the Encyclopedia), the directory of contributors, and
a comprehensive index.
Larry E. Davis