Date of Award

Spring 5-22-2021

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Dr. Tamar Hadar, MT-BC


Grief is a natural human experience that may occur at different levels: individual, familiar, community and systemic. Studies show that grieving may look different across cultures: considering that there are countries with a more collective nature, such as Peru, grieving and healing may involve interventions that allow working with grief at multiple levels. At the same time, grief theories have evolved through time, and bereavement has been largely conceptualized from a Western perspective. In recent years, the cultural component was added to clinicians’ and health professionals’ considerations when approaching grief and bereavement. This thesis will explore Western grief theories but will focus on the unique a cultural frame of reference from a Latin American country, Peru. This literature review will also consider culture and artistic expressions in Peru, as a fundamental coping skill that is engrained in the Peruvian collective healing process. My work will discuss the intrinsic healing component of the expressive arts found in many cultures, and the fluid nature of the expressive arts therapy as an intervention. The latter, I argue, offers an opportunity to approach grief from a culturally sensitive lens. At the same time, it provides the flexibility to work with loss at multiple levels and navigate healing from a community-based approach. This opens space for contemplating the appropriateness of the expressive arts therapy as a culturally sensitive intervention for grief work.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.




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