The autocratic therapeutic community (TC) model in the United States emerged from controversial origins, including a California cult called Synanon. Subsequent residential therapeutic communities inspired by Synanon were characterized by their peer-led, confrontational therapy sessions; drug-free living environments; and hierarchical systems of therapeutic labor in which residents earned increasing responsibility as they recovered from drug or alcohol addiction. Therapeutic communities have been lauded for fostering a promising social model of addiction recovery; they have also been home to documented cases of therapeutic abuse.
UK Libraries Special Collections Research Center collects, preserves, and provides access to materials documenting the social, cultural, economic, and political history of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. SCRC is home to UK Libraries' collection of manuscripts, University of Kentucky archives, rare books, Kentuckiana, the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, the King Library Press, the Bert T. Combs Appalachian Collection, the John G. Heyburn II Initiative for Excellence in the Federal Judiciary, and the Wendell H. Ford Public Policy Research Center.
Research materials in SCRC generally fall into the following categories:
Because of the rare and unique nature of the items in the Special Collections Research Center, they may only be used in person in the Breckinridge Research Room, located in the Margaret I. King Library on the University of Kentucky's campus. If you cannot visit in person, our research team will scan and send digital copies of special collections materials to you, up to 250 pages, free of charge.
All researchers who wish to visit the Breckinridge Research Room or place orders for digital scans must do so through SCRC's Research Services Account, available to anyone regardless of their affiliation to the University of Kentucky. Information on registering, requesting items, or visiting the Breckinridge Research room can be found at the links below.