Staging Therapeutic Enactment with Veterans in Contact!Unload

By

Dr. Graham W. Lea

Assistant Professor at the University of Manitoba

Dr. George Belliveau

Professor at the University of British Columbia

&

Dr. Marv Westwood

Professor Emeritus at the University of British Columbia

This article shares an excerpt from the research-based theatre production Contact!Unload. The play, developed with military veterans using community theatre approaches, explores experiences of veterans transitioning from active service and living with trauma-related stress injuries. The excerpt included in this article provides a theatricalized example of therapeutic enactment (TE), a central intervention of the Veterans’ Transition Project (VTP). After contextualizing both TE and VTP, the script provides a visceral example of one veteran’s experiences both in service and in a TE. This article provides an example of using TE with veterans living with traumatic stress injuries and, in doing so, demonstrates the potential of research-based theatre as a methodology for engaging in and sharing psychological research.


Lea, G. W., Belliveau, G., & Westwood, M. (2020). Staging therapeutic enactment with veterans in Contact! Unload. Qualitative Research in Psychology17(4), 521-540.