Jos De Backer

Jos De Backer
LUCA School of Arts | LUCA · Lemmens

Professor

About

25
Publications
8,473
Reads
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332
Citations
Introduction
Prof. Jos De Backer currently works at the Lemmens, LUCA School of Arts and KU Leuven, medical faculty, research unit 'contextual psychiatry' as principal researcher. Jos does research in psychosis, synchrony, clinical improvisation and Borderline Personality disorder. Their current project is 'The exploration of specific modalities of musical co-play in relation to psychopathology. Development of new styles in improvisation and composition.'.
Additional affiliations
October 2017 - May 2021
KU Leuven
Position
  • Professor
Description
  • Center for Contextual Psychiatry.
October 1985 - present
LUCA School of Arts
Position
  • Professor (Full)
Description
  • Head of Bachelor and Master training in Music Therapy. Senior researcher.
January 1984 - present
Universitair Psychiatrisch Centrum KU Leuven
Position
  • Head of Department
Education
October 2000 - October 2004
Aalborg University
Field of study
  • music therapy

Publications

Publications (25)
Article
Introduction Individuals with Personality Disorder commonly find it difficult to intuitively adapt to changing social situations such as small errors, ruptures and mis-attunements. This difficulty has been attributed to impairments in attachment, mentalization and epistemic trust. Recent research in music therapy addresses how patients can be suppo...
Article
Objectives Cancer patients, survivors and caregivers often encounter severe distress, having significant consequences to wellbeing, functionality and physical health. This study developed and evaluated a participatory arts programme to determine if such could help to improve the wellbeing of cancer patients and their caregivers. Methods To inform...
Article
Full-text available
Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a serious and complex mental disorder with a lifetime prevalence of 5.9%, characterized by pervasive difficulties with emotion regulation, impulse control, and instability in interpersonal relationships and self-image. Impairments in interpersonal functioning have always been a prominent characteristic of BP...
Presentation
Clinical improvisation is widely used in music therapeutic settings. This roundtable will reflect the use and innovated research of clinical improvisation in music therapy practice from an international, multi-theoretical perspective.Six music therapists from three different countries will provide a comprehensive presentation about innovated theore...
Article
Full-text available
background Music therapy is a predominantly non-verbal psychotherapy based on music improvisation.embedded In a therapeutic relationship. This is the reason wtiy music therapy is also used to treat depression. aim To examine the efficacy of music therapy and to report on the results of recent research into the value of music therapy as a treatment...
Article
In diesem Artikel wird die Beziehung zwischen musikalischer Improvisation und Psychose exploriert. Der musikalische Weise wie psychotischen Patienten sich in der musikalischen Improvisation präsentieren zeigt, in welcher Beziehung der Patient zu seiner Pathologie steht. In der Musiktherapie ist die therapeutische Hörhaltung ein wichtiger Aspekt, u...
Article
Full-text available
Baggrunden for denne artikel er vores erfaring med at musik er et yderst relevant redskab til at skab/genskabe et indre psykisk rum i arbejde med psykotiske patienter. Da et sådant psykisk rum ifølge klassisk psykoanalyse og objektrelationsteori stammer fra transformationer af sensoriske indtryk, som omdannes til en form for indre repræsentationer,...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Prof De Backer will present his thinking about musical processes via several clinical cases. He will use video examples of work to describe and explore moments or levels within a musical and therapeutic process, and examine the specific music therapy interventions relating to the development of a potential space (Winnicott) that makes a music thera...
Article
The aspect of regression in the relationship between patient and therapist, as well as the experience of the psychotic patient, is examined in this article and illustrated by means of examples in my practise of music therapy. From an analytical point of view the relationship between the medium music and the regressive aspects, active as well as pas...
Article
This joint-authored article explores the ways in which music can speak directly to the traumatic, and how music therapy offers a unique means of coming to an understanding of the traumatised patient. We take a musical and psychoanalytical theoretical stance. Drawing on case material from work with a young boy and an adult attending a psychiatric ou...
Article
Full-text available
This clinical research study examined the music therapeutic process from sensorial play to musical form by psychotic patients. Based on the assumption that the psychic space has its origins in the transition from sensorial play to musical form, and that the capacity to make representations is severely affected by psychosis, there is a need to find...

Network

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Projects

Projects (2)
Project
Clinical music therapy practice shows that people with long-term psychotic problems often have great interest in music creation and performance. However, we observe that this artistic activity, which is usually practiced in a solitary manner, always leads to a stagnation of the creative process and/or the inability to reach an effective musical creation. In this exploratory study we shall investigate (1) whether using a process-compositional approach can break through this isolation and (2) how the artistic process can be supported and facilitated in a manner resulting in the creation of a real musical product. Process-composition is described here as a music therapy approach where improvisation and composition are closely intertwined. As proto-musical themes emerge spontaneously during improvisation, they will be developed by compositional techniques and/or interventions. This procedure takes place within the context of an intensive dialogue in which the therapist/researcher is a key figure, sustaining the creative process and bringing it to a satisfactory result. This exploratory study uses a multiple case study design. Furthermore, the study will include the influence of these process-composition approaches on the Quality of Life (QoL) of patients with long-term psychotic problems.
Project
Publications have shown how patients present different ways of playing that relate to their psychological disorder (Smeijsters, 2005; Streeter, 1999). In addition to anecdotal evidence from clinical work, evidence of pathological play is to be found in research (De Backer, 2008; Schumacher et al. 2011; Von Moreau & Koenig, 2013). A literature review shows how it is possible that the musical co-play of diagnosed pathological groups may be used to examine of specific aspects such as expression, emotional contact, motor skills, intersubjectivity, musical interaction, communication ... for the purpose of the development of a diagnostic or as an assessment tool. In this study we want to focus only on the music in the music improvisation in a clinical context. This is based on the research of De Backer (2008), which demonstrated how characteristic ways of playing are visible within a therapeutic process (see fig.1). We know that a transformation in the modality of playing entails a transformation on a psychological level. In this study, we want to differentiate between the various styles (modalities of playing) in the musical co-play of improvisation. Through this research, we will gain insight into the different characteristic improvisational styles. As a result it will become possible to explore and define musical interventions. These musical interventions are necessary for transforming the modalities of playing of the patient in a clinical context. The developing and defining musical interventions will also be undertaken in collaboration with composers. From findings related to the musical components of the clinical material, the composer will create new compositions in which transformations from one improvisation style to another can be explored. In this study, this will make a clear cross-over between clinical practice and the artistic practice of composition.