Trauma and the Media: How Movies can Create and Relieve Trauma

  • Ani Kalayjian
  • Lisa Finnegan Abdolian


Any movie producer will tell you that action and violence will almost guarantee an international audience .This chapter discusses how the mass media affect the social understanding of traumatic events, how they influence individuals who have experienced a trauma in both positive and negative ways and how carefully chosen movies can be used to help clients reframe negative experiences and/or perceptions. The authors have enlisted several movies throughout the chapter that in their opinion can be therapeutic for trauma survivors if used appropriately. Films can help facilitate understanding; they can help the survivors realize that they are not alone in their suffering and that their thoughts and feelings are normal reactions to an abnormal event. Films also can be used to instill hope, can illustrate the importance of practicing forgiveness; and can provide information about how to heal, including role models who use healthy coping modalities. Films can also introduce integrative approaches such as psychotherapy, counseling, energy work, Reiki, acupuncture, deep tissue massages, flower remedies, and homeopathic remedies.


Traumatic Event Posttraumatic Stress Disorder World Trade Center Transitional Justice Phobic Disorder 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We express special gratitude to Elissa Jacobs and Miryam Nadkarni for their generous and kind editorial comments.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Fordham UniversityNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.NiceFrance

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