About Us

The information on this site which uses Expressive Writing as a psychosocial support for mental-wellbeing, was codeveloped as part of the AHRC project funded under Global Challenges, ‘Expressive writing and telling in crisis: addressing urgent needs in the Akkar Valley, Lebanon’.

Watch this short film made by participants in this project to see how Expressive Writing has helped them. 

Siobhan Campbell and Meg Jensen, writers and academic researchers, developed the Expressive Life Writing Handbook (2016) and methodology in response to the Expressive Writing work of James Pennebaker and Celia Hunt. The Expressive Life Writing Handbook was published as an output of a research grant received from UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office Human Rights fund. Director Nadine Saba from the NGO, Akkar Network for Development (AND) and her colleagues assisted with the subsequent refinement, adaptation and pilot testing of this self-care kit during the multiple current crises in Lebanon: COVID-19, socio-political pressures, the refugee situation, and economic collapse. We are deeply grateful to the tireless professionals at AND for their enthusiastic and valuable collaboration in the development and testing of this toolkit throughout this difficult period.

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Siobhan M Campbell

Kingston University

Dr Siobhan M. Campbell is Co-founder of the Expressive Life Writing Project and founder of the Military Writing Network. Campbell’s research investigates how writing practice can contribute to overcoming exclusion and discrimination in contested environments, specifically by helping survivors recover resilience and cultural identity. In humanities-based interventions with the UNDP Iraq, NGOs in Lebanon, the Institute of Conflict Research, Combat Stress UK, SSAFA, and VOS (Veterans Outreach Support) as well as in Heinrich Boll Foundation-funded work with refugee populations in Jordan, Campbell’s research re-deploys the pedagogies of Creative Writing to develop frameworks which lead to behavioural change, empowered decision-making and enhanced coping capacities. Campbell adapted Narrative Inquiry for work with ex-combatants as part of a Dialogue for Peaceful Change Diploma (DPC), Northern Ireland. Collaborating with the PeaceIV-funded project ‘Peace and Beyond’, she has developed arts participatory projects with The Institute of Conflict Research and the British Council. Publications include Mapping Jabal Al Natheef (Heinrich-Boll Stiftung Palestine/Jordan, 2013), the co-written Expressive Life Writing Handbook (2018) and ‘Negotiated Truths and Iterative Practice in Action: The Women In Conflict Expressive Life Writing Project’ In Research Methods for Auto/biography Studies (2019), Courage and Strength: Stories and Poems by Combat Veterans and Telling our Stories – patients and carers of Royal Trinity Hospice. She has acted as consultant for Countering Violent Extremism for the FCO and co-devised ‘Expressive Writing for Social Cohesion’ for UNDP.

Meg Jensen

Meg Jensen

Kingston University

Professor Meg Jensen is Director of the Life Narrative Research Group at Kingston University in London. As a longstanding member of the International Association of Autobiographical Studies (IABA), she is recognized internationally as an authority on the relationship between trauma and autobiographical writing. In 2014 she co-edited a major collection Life Narratives and Human Rights to which she contributed a chapter on the science of traumatogenic writing. Jensen s work includes ‘The Legible Face of Human Rights in Autobiographical Fiction,’ The Routledge Companion to Literature and Human Rights, August 2015; ‘Surviving the Wreck: Post-traumatic Writers, Bodies in Transition and the point of Autobiographical Fiction’ in Lifewriting, 2017 and ‘Post-Traumatic Memory Projects: Autobiographical Fiction and Counter-monuments’ in Textual Practice (2013). In 2019 she published The Art and Science of Trauma and the Autobiographical: Negotiated Truth with Palgrave.

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