The Bibliotherapy is project implemented by PEN Armenia within the Civil Society Support for Ensuring Impact on Reforms project. The Civil Society Support for Ensuring Impact on Reforms project implemented by Eurasia Partnership Foundation with the support of Swedish Government.
Bibliotherapy: contributing to overcoming post-war trauma (short: Bibliotherapy) aims to brining together members of PEN Armenia with psychologists, anthropologists, sociologists, social workers and/or researchers from other related fields to use the potential of bibliotherapy and writing therapy.
As a result of Covid-19 pandemic and particularly the 44-day war and its consequences, Armenia is experiencing a multifaceted crisis. A number of internal and external factors such as loss of human life to the pandemic and war, anxiety and uncertainty with respect to the present and the future stemming from security concerns, hate speech in political and social arena as well as in social media, contribute to the aggravation of the crisis. While all of this plays a part in deepening the post-war trauma, there is no thorough state policy in Armenia to overcome it.
Security is claimed to be the number one issue, while healing policy is barely discussed, except for targeted assistance programs carried out by some ministries and organizations, whose beneficiaries are the direct victims of war and their families. Post-war political shocks did not allow the society to smoothly transition through the psychological stages of grief to conciliation, come to terms and then face new local and regional realities with regained inner peace.
The abovementioned profound issue requires well thought solutions, one of which could be using the power of art, particularly literature to partly overcome and mitigate the social trauma. Bibliotherapy is an initiative of PEN Armenia aimed at overcoming post-war trauma by using the potential of literature. Under the project it is envisaged to study the international experience/practice in bibliotherapy and writing therapy, as well as its theoretical foundations.