Rob Pramann, Ph.D.

I make no claim that this bibliography is comprehensive or necessarily current. It represents materials that I have read and studied. It includes my brief summary and review of books on Moreno, his ideas, and closely related ideas in the hope that it may guide students of the psychodramatic approach to materials of interest to them. It lists only one primary source or example of Moreno's original work, an anthology of Moreno's writings. Moreno's many asides, lack of a systematic explication of his theory, and philosophical and literary background which is quite different from that which is common to most in America, makes getting to know him and his approach through his writings a challenge. No one has summarized his ideas and theoretical framework to my satisfaction. His early writings were deeply and profoundly philosophical, theological, and mystical. He did not emphasize that aspect of his thinking after coming to America in 1925. Yet understanding those underlying ideas provides a valuable illumination and insight to the approach and techniques he developed. At the same time, Moreno's early writing are as of one inspired, full of Biblical allusions and envisioning a religious revolution. Though I do not agree with many of his ideas, I look forward to doing an annotated Bibliography of his writings is the future and a summary of his ideas and theory.

American Society for Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama. (n.d.) General
Information about Psychodrama Retrieved March 13, 2005, from

American Society for Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama. (n.d.) General
Information about Sociometry. Retrieved March 13, 2005, from

Blatner, A. (1988). The art of play: An adult’s guide to reclaiming imagination and
spontaneity. New York: Human Sciences.

This book does not focus on psychodrama per se but on related ideas that may be of interest to the psychodrama trainee.

Blatner, A. (1996). Acting in: Practical applications of psychodramatic methods,
3rd Ed. New York: Springer.
One of the best introductory texts on the details of the psychodramatic method.

Blatner, A. (2000). Foundations of psychodrama: History, theory, and practice
(4th ed.). New York: Springer.

This book focuses on the history of psychodrama including its slow acceptance, philosophical foundations, psychological foundations, social implications, and practical implications. I take exception with some of Blatner’s interpretations and thinking yet this volume provides valuable background for the novice psychodramatist.

Dayton, T. (1990). Drama games: Techniques for self-development. Deerfield Beach, FL: Health Communications.

Dayton lists her experiential games and exercises for individuals and groups, adults and children, in the counseling office, classroom, or at home, giving clear directions, and identifying variations for particular needs. She seeks to address issues related to growing up in alcoholic and dysfunctional environments.

Dayton, T. (1994) The drama within: Psychodrama and experiential therapy.
Deerfield Beach, FL: Health Communications.

Dayton attempts to make psychodramatic theory and technique accessible, discussing its origins, step-by step-methods to safely structure drama games for a wide variety of clients and situations, and explores the growing use of the method in the addictions field. In particular she addresses the treatment of addiction, ACOAs, and trauma.

Dayton, T. (2003). Psychodrama in the resolution of trauma and grief. Counselor,
The magazine for addiction professionals, 4 (2), 33-39. Also available on
line at

This short article cogently describes the traumatic memory, the frequent connection with addictions, the effectiveness of psychodrama/action methods in addressing both, and gives some brief but specific examples of these methods.

Fox, J. L. (Ed.). (1987). The essential Moreno. New York: Springer.

This volume contains a compendium of Moreno’s original works abridged and organized to provide a concise overview to Moreno and his method. This is significant because Moreno s writings often were repetitious and include lengthy ‘‘asides."

Fox, J. (1994). Acts of service: Spontaneity, commitment, tradition in the
nonscripted theatre. New Paltz, NY: Tusitala.

In this volume the author’s excitement about and scholarly interest in both the history and contemporary forms of nonscripted theatre is quite apparent. Particular attention is given to oral theatre and the author’s contemporary version of that form, playback theatre. The nuances of that form are articulated here.

Fuhlrodt, R. (Ed.). (1990). Psychodrama: Its Application to ACOA and Substance
Abuse Treatment
. Rutherford, NJ: Perrin & Treggott.).

This book is the result of a forum at the 44th Annual meeting of the American Society for Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama in 1986 and the felt need for this kind of book. It contains a variety of ideas on the application of psychodrama to addiction issues. I found parts of this volume useful; the quality of the different sections was uneven.

Gill, M. (n.d.) What is Psychodrama? an interactive resource. Retrieved March
13, 2005, from

Goldman, E. E., & Morrison, D. E. (1984). Psychodrama: Experience and
process. Debuque, Iowa: Kendall/Hunt.

This book describes the psychodramatic method Elaine Goldman developed which she now calls “FACT” or Focused ACTion. A fellow student dubbed her method “laser psychodrama” because of the abbreviation and conciseness her refinements effect for the purpose of making it easier to learn and easier to use with patients. I experience her approach as leaving out some of the heart and soul of the method and fear it could be confusing to students learning the more traditional version. A lasting contribution of this work is the Goldman’s explication and illustration of the psychodramatic spiral.

Goldman, E. E. (Director), Morrison, D. E., & Goldman, S. G. (1987).
Psychodrama: A training tape. Phoenix, AZ: Eldemar [Videotape].
(Available from Elaine Eller Goldman, 1411 E. Orangewood Ave., #134,
Phoenix, AZ 85020)

This training tape includes a professionally edited session with a recovering alcoholic/ACOA, director’s comments, transitions, and process, tracking on the psychodramatic spiral, and study guide containing a transcription of the tape.

Hale, A. E. (1981). Conducting Clinical Sociometric Explorations: A Manual for
Psychodramatists and Sociometrists. Roanole, VA: Royal Publishing.

Moreno once referred to Hale, a librarian by training, as “the Librarian of the Gods” because of her interest and expertise in this area. This book is indisputably the best introduction to sociometry. However, Hale is in the process of revising it and is also editing an anthology of articles on sociometry.

Holmes, P. (1992). The inner world outside: Object relations theory and
psychodrama. New York: Routledge.

This book presents a single psychodrama session and then illustrates, chapter by chapter, relevant basic psychoanalytical concepts in action.

Holmes, P. & Karp, M. (Eds.). (1991). Psychodrama: Inspiration and technique.
New York: Routledge.

This collection has in common the application of psychodrama to clients whose problems and psychological difficulties make them difficult to help: adolescents, the learning disabled, a blended family, sexually abused young people and adults, disturbed adolescents, an anorexic, alcoholics, ACOAs and codependents, hard core offenders, and suffers of serious illness.

Holmes, P., Karp, M., Watson, M. (Eds.). (1994). Psychodrama since Moreno:
Innovations in theory and practice. New York: Routledge.

The authors creatively extend and elaborate Moreno’s approach and thought. They sketch out the “therapeutic space” that Moreno’s approach covers, from the conscious to the unconscious and the intrapsychic to the transpersonal or spiritual. They implicitly raise the issue of how far an approach that emphasizes spontaneity and creativity can evolve before it becomes something different. They both shed light and obscure. The process of understanding Moreno is yet in its adolescence.

Hudgins, M. K. (2002). Experiential treatment for PTSD: The therapeutic
spiral model
. New York: Springer.

Hudgins outlines her variation and elaboration of psychodrama developed specifically to guard the vulnerability of trauma victims. She has developed an organization that teaches the method on an international basis.

Kellerman, F. K. (1992). Focus on psychodrama: The therapeutic aspects of
psychodrama. Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley.

This volume systematizes and clarifies the fundamental theoretical and practical aspects of psychodrama as well as setting aside old myths and breaking new ground. His experience with the method, grasp of the psychotherapy literature, philosophical insight, and ability to innovate are apparent.

Kellerman, P. F. and Hudgins, M. K. (Eds.). (2000). Psychodrama with trauma
survivors: Acting out your pain. Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley.

The editors, noted psychodramatists, have put together a wide ranging anthology of articles on trauma with a wide range of populations and problems including bereavement, rape, torture, abused children, addiction, sex offenders, dissociation, traffic accidents, and secondary victims.

Kipper, D.A., (1986). Psychotherapy through clinical role playing. New York:

Kipper presents his idea of separating Moreno’s role playing methods from the rest of his approach to create a generic role playing method. His evaluation of the different “role playing techniques” is of particular interest because of his discussion of indications and contraindications of their use. Of all others only Leveton begins to address this issue. Kipper believes his approach will make these methods more acceptable to persons not trained in psychodrama. I felt much was lost.

Klontz, B. (1999). Talk is cheap: The healing effects of experiential therapy and
psychodrama. Professional Counselor, 14 (4), 35-38. Also available on
line at

Klontz succinctly describes psychodrama and it’s application to addictive issues within a residential program. (In Oct. 2000 Professional Counselor became Counselor, The magazine for addiction professionals.)

Klontz, B. T. (2004). Ethical practice of group experiential psychotherapy.
Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training, 41, 172-179.

Klontz discusses ethical issues relevant to the use of psychodrama and experiential psychotherapy, particularly group in contrast to individual treatment, therapist competence, leader power issues, and aftercare. He makes reference to the American Psychological Association’s “Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct” and the “Association for Specialists in Group Work Best Practice Guidelines.”

Klontz, B. T., Wolf, E. M., & Bivens, A. (2001). The effectiveness of a multimodal
brief group experiential psychotherapy approach. The International
Journal of Action Methods: Psychodrama Skill Training, and Role
Playing, 53 (3-4), 119-153).

As is true of most group therapies and psychodrama in particular there are few attempts to study demonstrating effectiveness of these methods. This practitioner and scholar’s contribution is particularly appreciated.

Leveton, E. (1992). A clinician’s guide to psychodrama (2nd ed.). New York,

This author writes as from outside the general psychodrama collective, a nonconformist and rebel of sorts but acknowledges her delight in being recognized by Zerka Moreno in the forward. Some of her ideas are inconsistent with generally accepted psychodramatic methodology but her perspective on the method as one from outside the main stream is valuable. I specifically appreciated her thoughts on indications and contraindications for certain techniques.

Marineau, R. F. (1989). Jacob Levi Moreno, 1889-1974. New York: Routledge.

For many reasons this is the first biography of J.L. Moreno and psychodrama and contains a number of surprises. It will enrich one's understanding and practice of Moreno s methods.

Miller, D. (1997/1998). Doers of the word: How stories come to life through
bibliodrama. Available from Beacon Remainders, 1610 Helena Lane,
Redlands, CA 92373; (909) 798—2765

The author is a professing liberal Christian who has training in psychodrama. His presentation of bibliodrama here is rather directive, dogmatic, and less developed than others. He has some unique ideas on how dramatic methods may be used.

Nicholas, M. W. (1984). Change in the context of group therapy. New York:

This text is written by a practitioner with a very active outpatient group practice who uses psychodrama as one of her tools. It includes a discusson of grouop therapy as well as psychodrama.

Pitzele, P. (1995). Our father s wells: A personal encounter with the myths of
genesis. New York: HarperCollins.

This work is autobiographical, describing how the author came to terms with his Jewish heritage, and an example of the deep and personal learning Bibliodrama can inspire. Though some of his ideas may be controversial to some he offers much one can learn from and appreciate. Throughout his writing he is clear and vibrant. He is an accomplished writer and poet. His work is a joy to read.

Pitzele, P. A. (1998). Scripture windows: Toward a practice of bibliodrama. Los
Angeles: Torah Aura.

This work is the best one on the method of Bibliodrama per se. The author clearly describes and illustrates his well honed techniques and ideas. He differentiates an approach that is text or study focused and a second that is personal or therapy focused. He also identifies a short form (where beginners can start) and a longer form of the method.

Salas, J. (1993). Improvising real life: Personal story in playback theatre.
Dubuque, Iowa: Kendal/Hunt.

This author knows playback intimately as one of the original playback troupe and partner of the leader of that group, Jonathan Fox. Her book serves as a good general introduction to this approach. She acknowledges its similarity to Moreno’s spontaneity theatre which ultimately developed into psychodrama.

Steinberg, P., & Garcia, A (1989). Sociodrama: Who’s in your shoes. New York:

Sociodrama uses enactment to focus on group as opposed to individual issues using an educational as opposed to therapeutic thrust but like psychodrama deals with thoughts and feelings and often deep emotions. Sociodrama is more commonly practiced outside the US perhaps because this is the first book on the subject since 1949. This book is a valuable resource since on some occasions a psychodrama warm-up may more appropriately lead to a sociodrama.

Vander May, J. H. (1980). Psychodrama a duex: Practical applications of
psychodrama to individual counseling. Available from James Vander May,
M.A., T.E.P., Life Enrichment Center, Pine Rest Christian Hospital, 300
68th S.E., Grand Rapids, MI 49548-6999.

This short volume is especially for those who do not envision themselves directing a psychodrama group but who would like to use it as part of their individual sessions. It contains some me good ideas.

Williams, A. (1989). The passionate technique: Strategic psychodrama with
individuals, families, and groups. New York: Tavistock/Routledge.

This author indicts psychodrama for being full of sound and fury but signifying nothing. He presents his alternative, “strategic psychodrama.” I found this difficult reading because I do not agree with his main thesis but found his other ideas helpful.

Yablonsky, L. (1992). Psychodrama: Resolving emotional problems through role-
play. New York: Brunner/Mazel.

This volume is an often-recommended basic book on psychodrama originally published in 1981. Yablonsky writes in an interesting narrative style that captures the spirit of psychodrama though some of the practical and theoretical details are sketchy.

Other Resources

Adam Blatner's Papers on Psychodrama
Adam Blatner is a leading contemporary spokesman for psychodrama and networker among psychodramatists. In addition to his many books he has posted a number of artcles on his website.Though this author takes exception with some of his interpretations and thinking, Blatner provides helpful information on psychodrama for the novice and more advanced seeker alike.

American Board of Examiners in Psychodrama, Sociometry and Group
Psychotherapy, P.O. Box 15572, Washington D.C. 20003-0572 (202) 483-
0514 (currently has no website but currently displays certification
requirements on the website of the American Society for Group
Psychotherapy and Psychodrama [ASGPP].)

The Board annually publishes a booklet listing certified trainers and practitioners and the current certification standards for each along with detailed information on pursuing certification. These standards can also be found at the ASGPP website.

American Society for Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama (ASGPP)

ASGPP is the national professional organization for practitioners of psychodrama. They publish The International Journal of Action Methods: Psychodrama, Skill Training, and Role Playing, and a newsletter; organize an annual conference; and host a web site. The website has many helpful features including a comprehensive searchable bibliography with over 5,000 entries.

Mental Health Resources (

MHR distributes psychodrama texts and is the easiest and oftentimes least expensive way to obtain materials on psychodrama. In their last flyer 48 items were listed as in stock.

Psychodrama Introduction - An Interactive Experience

Martin Gill has developed a website, which includes "What is Psychodrama? An interactive resource" that explains many key concepts in psychodrama. The resource presents a menu of definitions, each of which are downloadable, and includes a lengthy list of warm-ups the author has developed or cataloged.









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