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Åpen tilgang
(side 6-8)
av Anita Jensen & Wenche Torrissen
Åpen tilgang
Vitenskapelig publikasjon
(side 9-20)
av Paula Bergman, Inger Jansson & Pia H Bülow

Arts on Referral (AoR) is a complementary intervention used to support people who are on sick leave due to common mental disorders (CMD) and/or musculoskeletal pain, challenging public health.

Aim: To deepen the understanding of how AoR works from a health-promoting perspective and how people with CMD and/or musculoskeletal pain experience AoR.

Design: The study adopted a qualitative approach. Thirty women (21–65 years old) participated in a total of five focus groups after the AoR intervention, which consisted of two sessions a week for ten weeks.

Findings: A qualitative content analysis of the focus group identified four categories: 1. Place of belonging including descriptions of social connectedness and understanding; 2. Experiences of AoR as a respite from demands; 3. Arts activities offering challenge and reward; and 4. Contributing to health-promoting changes. The findings were discussed in the light of Wenger’s concept of community of practice and Csikszentmihalyi’s concept of flow.

Value: This study describes how AoR contributed to health-promoting changes by offering a place of belonging, free from demands but still with opportunities to challenge oneself and explore new skills. Findings suggest that AoR can be helpful in improving mental wellbeing and feelings of belonging.

Åpen tilgang
Vitenskapelig publikasjon
(side 21-33)
av Ingrid Femdal, Eva Bjørg Antonsen, Bruce Burton & Margret Lepp

Background: Students in mental health care education can learn from experiences in clinical situations by using drama. Warm-up exercises can provide students with activities which generate engagement and enthusiasm for the learning experiences that follow, and create a safe learning environment where students can feel comfortable to participate.

Purpose: To explore and describe mental healthcare students’ experiences of participating in warm-up exercises in a drama workshop.

Design: This qualitative study is based on the researchers’ participation in field studies of a drama workshop, and focus group interviews with the students.

Findings: The findings indicated that the warm-up exercises provided positive learning experiences, and these are represented in two main categories with related sub-categories: 1) Creating a positive learning environment, and 2) Being involved and engaged in the experience.

Originality/Value: This study shows that to achieve safe and engaging learning, the use of warm-up activities can be particularly valuable in encouraging participants to experiment freely and spontaneously with different roles from their clinical experiences.

Åpen tilgang
Vitenskapelig publikasjon
(side 34-47)
av Eva Bojner Horwitz, Karin Rehnqvist, Walter Osika, David Thyrén, Louise Åberg, Jan Kowalski & Töres Theorell

Background: Music listening can improve acquisition of new knowledge.

Purpose: The purpose of the study was to evaluate the emotional and cognitive effects of a knowledge concert on the attending audience.

Methodology: The audience was asked to complete a Visual Analogue Scale (10 cm) before and after listening to the concert, along five variables: Arousal, Degree of happiness, Degree of worry, Daily worries and Benevolence. Follow-up qualitative interviews gathered narratives from the participants.

Findings: 228 concert attendees took part in the study by completing the questionnaires (51 percent of the whole audience). Statistically significant changes were observed in the outcome measures for: Arousal (p=0.002), Daily worries (p<0.001) and Degree of happiness (p=0.01). Degree of worry interacted with age (p<0.001). No changes were found for Benevolence (p=0.93). Gender and previous music experiences did not make a difference to feelings evoked by the music. Age, however, was important since younger participants became more worried by the concert than older.

Originality: We discuss the potential role of future knowledge concerts that comprise qualities explored, such as mitigating a variety of embodied psychological capacities, including reflection and agency in audiences, facilitating learning about sensitive issues, and potentially also transformation towards prosocial mindsets and behavior.

Åpen tilgang
Vitenskapelig publikasjon
(side 48-62)
av Theodore Stickley, Michael Craig Watson, Ada Hui, Alessandro Bosco, Blandine French & Basharat Hussain

Purpose: This evaluation study assesses the effectiveness of a creative writing programme for older people. Locations included: care homes, community-based locations, hospital wards and online.

Method: Using a mixed-methods approach, the study draws upon: registration documents, facilitators’ diaries, qualitative interviews and satisfaction survey data. Both quantitative and qualitative data were independently analysed.

Findings: A total of 190 people engaged with the programme, and 105 workshop sessions were delivered in six venues, with five being delivered online. A total of 653 surveys were returned, 105 facilitators’ diary entries were analysed, and 12 qualitative interviews were conducted. Six themes emerged from the qualitative analysis and these related to finding ways in which creativity can be stimulated and used for health and wellbeing.

Originality: In spite of the pandemic and its effects on the planned delivery, the programme of work was very well received by participants. This may well be the only published evaluation of a programme of creative writing for older people that was partially delivered online. Writing groups for older people can be challenging, but they can prove beneficial in terms of self-expression and wellbeing. There is much potential for further development of bespoke online groups for this increasing population of older people.

Åpen tilgang
Vitenskapelig publikasjon
(side 63-74)
av Lilli Mittner, Karoline Dalby & Rikke Gürgens Gjærum

Purpose: In this paper we describe how co-creative art practices can involve people living with dementia as active citizens. We build on the Nordic Relational Model of Disability (GAP model) that conceptualizes levels of functioning as a mismatch between individual abilities and requirements from the environment.

Design: We explore how reciprocal aesthetic experiences from two residential care homes in Northern Norway can broaden a narrow biomedical understanding of dementia. Arts-based research and sensory ethnography are our methodological frames. We present three field descriptions that open an aesthetic universe through fine art, poetry and applied theatre.

Findings: We find in our research that the gap between individual abilities and social requirements can become a space for creativity, in which everyone becomes connected and contributes to shared aesthetic experiences. We argue that broadening our understanding of the gap can result in new ways of relating to and being with each other.

Originality: The paper advances aesthetic perspectives in dementia research.

Åpen tilgang
Eksistensielle stormar, toreskyer og hus med rolege hav: ei vitskapeleg og poetisk utforsking av sosial støtte i psykisk helsearbeid
Existential storms, thunderclouds and houses with calm seas: A scientific and poetic exploration of social support in mental health work
Vitenskapelig publikasjon
(side 75-90)
av Knut Ivar Bjørlykhaug, Rose Marie Bank & Bengt Karlsson
SammendragEngelsk sammendrag

Bakgrunn: Forskinga er tydeleg på at sosial støtte er avgjerande for god psykisk helse. Denne artikkelen handlar om folk sine erfaringar med forhold som fremjar og hemjar sosial støtte i psykisk helsearbeid. Artikkelen har som mål å utforske forhold som påverkar sosial støtte i vår tid, spesielt relatert til korleis vi opplever støtte i kjensleliv og praktisk kvardag når vi går gjennom langvarige psykiske helsevanskar.

Metodologi: Inspirert av poesi som metode har vi reanalysert delar av datamaterialet etter gjennomførte fokusgruppeintervju og deltakande observasjon. Metodedelen tek føre seg kvifor poesi som analysemetode og verktøy kan vere relevant, både i analyseprosess og i presentasjon av data. To av forfattarane har erfaringar med psykiske helsevanskar.

Funn: Funna er presentert gjennom to poetiske hovudtema: I: det som blomstrar og II: det som visnar. Funna beskriv kva betyding estetikk, økonomi, strukturelle tilhøve og haldningar kan ha for opplevinga av sosial støtte.

Originalitet: Artikkelen løftar fram nokre av sosial støtte sine vilkår ved hjelp av poetisk analyse og formidling, og inviterer til innsikter som tradisjonelt format ikkje alltid kan gje.

Background: Research shows that social support is crucial for good mental health. This article explores people’s experiences of conditions that promote and hinder social support in mental health work. Our aim is to explore conditions that affect social support in our time, in the sense of how we experience support in both our emotional life and our practical daily life when we experience long-term mental health struggles.

Methodology: Inspired by poetry as a method, we have reanalyzed data and written field notes with a focus on creative writing and poetry. We explore why poetry as a method of analysis and as a tool can be relevant in both the analysis and in the presentation of data. Two of the authors have personal experience with mental health problems.

Findings: The findings are presented as two poetic themes: I: that which flourishes and II: that which languishes. The findings describe what significance aesthetics, economy, structural conditions and attitudes potentially have for the experience of social support.

Originality: This article highlights central conditions of social support through poetic analysis and dissemination, and proposes an understanding of the topic that the traditional format may not always provide.

Nordic Journal of Arts, Culture and Health
2-1-2021, volume 3

Nordic Journal of Arts, Culture and Health is an open access journal established in 2019, with its first issue published in November 2019. The journal provides a platform for publication and debate in the interdisciplinary field of arts and culture in healthcare and health promotion. The purpose of the journal is to contribute to dissemination of research, knowledge and practice experience in the arts, culture and health field.

The journal aims to
– Strengthen the arts and health field in the Nordic countries and globally
– Contribute to the growing knowledge in the field from Nordic and international points of view
– Document existing projects to make sure that valuable knowledge is maintained and shared
– Provide Nordic politicians and decision-makers with an evidence-base for policy-making

The journal defines ‘health’ broadly which includes physical, mental, emotional, cultural, existential, spiritual, occupational, social and community health.

The journal’s target audience is researchers and students in academic institutions, practitioners working with arts and culture in health and social care, education, government institutions, the media and other stakeholders from the broader public.

The journal publishes articles in Danish, English, Norwegian, and Swedish.

The journal is published by Scandinavian University Press (Universitetsforlaget AS) on behalf of Norwegian Resource Centre for Arts and Health (Norway), Volda University College (Norway), Primary Healthcare, Region Skåne (Sweden), Aalborg University (Denmark), Royal College of Music (Sweden), Uniarts Helsinki’s CERADA Research Center (Finland) and Turku University of Applied Sciences (Finland).

Anita Jensen, PhD, Primary Healthcare, Region Skåne, Sweden and Guest Researcher, Department of Communication and Psychology, Aalborg University, Denmark.
Wenche Torrissen, Professor, Drama and Theatre, Volda University College, and Norwegian Resource Centre for Arts and Health

Associate editor
Liisa Laitinen
Adviser Arts & Health, Arts Academy, Turku University of Applied Sciences

Editorial assistant
Dziuginta Baraldsnes

Design and typesetting: Type-it AS, Trondheim
Cover design: KORD AS / Scandinavian University Press, Sissel Tjernstad
ISSN online: 2535-7913
DOI: 10.18261/issn.2535-7913

© Scandinavian University Press 2021

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