Meaning making in the aftermath of trauma: A narrative review

Fiona Kau, Joanne Lusher * and Alastair Pipkin

Regent’s University London, UK.
Review Article
World Journal of Advanced Research and Reviews, 2024, 21(01), 1202–1208
Article DOI10.30574/wjarr.2024.21.1.0114
Publication history: 
Received on 01 December 2023; revised on 09 January 2024; accepted on 11 January 2024
Meaning making is an important task for overcoming the impact of physical and psychological traumas, yet various theoretical perspectives conceptualise this process differently. Although meaning making is central to various psychological therapies aimed at addressing the impact of trauma, there remain some differences in definition, stance and approach. This narrative review on meaning making in the aftermath of trauma is therefore informed by seminal texts of existential therapy with searches conducted using databases relevant to the field using key word combinations like “meaning making”, “process of meaning making” and “meaning-making process” with “trauma”. This search generated over 200 published works that were reviewed for their relevance by assigning low, medium, high, or very high ratings. Within this review different understandings and conceptualisations of meaning and trauma have been conceptualised and discussed. How these are interrelated and the role of posttraumatic growth to the recovery of trauma is also deliberated. The discourse develops into the role of meaning in various modalities to demonstrate the importance of this within talking therapies. Concerns surrounding meaning making within talking therapies are also considered.
Narrative Review; Meaning Making; Trauma; Talking Therapies.
Full text article in PDF: 
Share this