Oliver J Morgan, PhD, is Professor of Counseling & Human Services at the University of Scranton. He has spent thirty years researching, teaching, and writing about mental health and addiction. He is the 2020 Award Winner for the Independent Press Awards in the category of Addiction & Recovery.
The author's dedication to including the human face of addiction
throughout the book ensures that science and therapeutics are
consistently married in an effort to meet the interwoven efforts of
individuals, healthcare professionals, communities and society as a
whole to ensure effective treatment and ongoing recovery for all
involved in the struggle with addiction...the author has profound
insights into the training needs of current addiction
professionals, especially counselors.
[The book] fills comprehensively a substantial gap in addiction literature... [Morgan's] approach provides an opportunity for building community and enhancing connection. While many mental health professionals seek to align with a clear model of conceptualizing addiction, Morgan challenges readers to not only question those models but then to also integrate them into a contemporary understanding how to help one of society's most vulnerable populations...This book engages the reader in a journey of challenging conventional approaches to addiction in favor of a trauma-informed approach. It is comprehensive enough to be used as a supplemental text in an Addictions course and digestible enough for the counselor seeking to enhance their understanding of addiction treatment. Through this book, Morgan helps to move the profession forward to a place of compassion. No longer will those suffering from addiction need to do so alone. With the assistance of the approaches and strategies outlined in this book, a traditionally isolating experience can become forged in community and hope.
A heartfelt analysis of what's missing in our understanding of addiction and in its treatment--a focus on underlying problems with attachment. Morgan urges us to move away from considering silos of causation of addiction to understanding how the interplay of social ecology, family, trauma, and neurons can affect the person's ability to connect and seek comfort, offering a new vision of what is occurring and what recovery needs to embrace.--Patricia A. O'Gorman, PhD, Psychologist, Speaker, author of The Resilient Woman, co-author Healing Trauma Through Self-Parenting, The Lowdown on Families Who Get High, and 12 Steps to Self-Parenting
Here is the book we need in our age of human disconnection. With passion and compassion, Oliver Morgan brilliantly weaves science and research, philosophy and spirituality, and addiction and recovery wisdom; giving us a model to find human connection again.--Stephanie Brown, PhD, Director, The Addictions Institute, Menlo Park, California
Oliver Morgan provides us with new and deep understanding of the troubling problem of addiction and its links to premature mortality in America. He begins with and elegantly presents the latest science, including the complex interactions between biological and social sciences on the one hand, and the role of attachment and trauma on the other. One of his main contributions is to focus on the human beings involved and the important role of community--or lack thereof. His focus on the 'poverty of spirit' is not just an important lens into the crisis of addiction and overdose, but also more generally into how and why we need to think deeper about the heart and soul of our society as we seek solutions.--Carol Graham, Leo Pasvolsky Senior Fellow, The Brookings Institution, College Park Professor, University of Maryland