Genograms : Assessment and Intervention, Paperback
4 out of 5 (1 rating)


Now updated and expanded in its third edition, and featuring revised genograms for easier reading, reflecting the growing and widespread use of genograms for clinical intervention, this best-selling text provides a standard method for constructing a genogram, doing a genogram interview, and interpreting the results.

Genograms of famous families-Sigmund Freud, Woody Allen and Mia Farrow, the Kennedys, Jane Fonda and Ted Turner, Bill Clinton, Princess Diana, the Roosevelts, and Thomas Jefferson, to name a few-bring the text to life, and help to elucidate the principles of family systems theory and systemic interviewing, which form the basis of genogram work.

Once these principles have been explained, the authors go on to present the important clinical applications of genograms in both family therapy and family medicine. These applications include the effective assessment of patients' risk for emotional problems such as anxiety or depression; structural patterns among families such as divorce and remarriage; relationship patterns such as enmeshment, conflicts, and cut-offs; recent and chronic life stressors such as pregnancy, acute illness, poverty, and racism; and family life cycle transitions and developmental crises, among other uses.

By providing a fascinating view into the richness of family dynamics, McGoldrick and her coauthors provide an invaluable guide to clinicians for accurately charting a family's structure, making it easier to scan for potential problems and take proactive steps to utilize resources when necessary.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 416 pages, 32-page color insert
  • Publisher: WW Norton & Co
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Genetics (non-medical)
  • ISBN: 9780393705096



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This is a decent book about genograms being used in the traditional sense. I bought it to make sense of the genograms done by social workers in my line of work. For that purpose, it's overkill. It did it's job, though, in explaining the basics of the genogram and the different uses it has in a clinical setting.I was disappointed that the book fails to cover how to genogram the "non-traditional" families that are often formed to try and survive in lower socioeconomic neighborhoods. Genorgrams were conceived to explain nuclear families with maybe one or two step-mother, adopted brother, or other "non-traditional" additions. This book offers no ideas, new or otherwise, that would aid in the diagramming of a typical family I come across in my work.