Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: June 25, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963978 | Print ISBN: 9781412909280 | Online ISBN: 9781412963978| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Bilingual counseling is defined as therapeutic discourse that accommodates the client's linguistic characteristics and incorporates bilingual or multilingual factors as vital components of psychological and contextual functioning. Because language and culture are closely embedded, attention to language diversity responds to competent multicultural counseling that includes self-awareness of the counselor, knowledge of bilingual processes, and skills in bilingual interventions. The discussion that follows applies not only to bilingual individuals but also to multilingual individuals, who may exhibit a more complex language presentation in counseling. In the initial stages of psychodynamic theory, Sigmund Freud documented treatment with bilinguals, but language factors per se were not addressed as instruments of therapeutic change. In the 1930s, some psychodynamic clinicians explored bilingualism, and by the late 1940s a more definite view emerged of language choice as a defense mechanism. Case studies published in the 1950s described the impact of multiple languages on psychodynamic processes such ...