This book is a quick and accessible reference guide to the key concepts that social work students and professionals need to understand to be effective. The authors place practice at the center of the text, and include a host of case examples to bring the concepts to life.

Examining the essential topics of the social work curriculum, the concepts covered relate to practice, theory, policy and personal challenges. Further reading is included in each entry, so that the reader can explore what they have learned in more detail.

This book will be an invaluable resource for social work students during their studies and on their practice placement. It will also be useful for qualified social workers, who want to continue their professional education.

The Political Context of Social Work

The political context of social work


Deriving from the Greek ‘polis’, relating to ‘communities’ or ‘city-states’, the term ‘politics’ is, today, subsumed in a plethora of understandings. Variously described as ‘the science or art of government’, ‘a particular set of political beliefs or principles’ and ‘factional scheming for power’ (Merriam Webster, 2011), difficulty remains in providing any one definitive meaning to the word ‘politics’. Yet, however defined, it is clear that ‘politics’ impacts at personal, cultural and structural levels, on every citizen of a nation state, daily, across all aspects of life.

From small ‘p’ politics relating to personal world viewpoints informed by value bases, through cultural ‘politics’ relating to professional lives, to bigger ‘P’ structural politics of local, regional and national ...

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