Deconstruction of Psychotherapy / Edition 1

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Psychotherapists have a love-hate relationship with theories, often clinging to those that are unsatisfying and incomplete. Deconstruction of Psychotherapy examines the functions and failings of theory, and, most critically for clinicians, the gap between theory and practice. It looks at the purposes and perils of ardent allegiances irrespective of a particular school or strategy. This means examining the many uses and abuses of the clinician's belief system. While therapists need to be committed to a body of beliefs, an inability to look beyond it can be countertherapeutic; hiding behind a theory may be as bad as not having one to relinquish. Moreover, deconstruction of the positive and negative elements of theory reveals therapists' uncertainty as they acknowledge that one of their compasses resides somewhere between myth and truth.

Describes the concept of deconstruction, theories, statistical issues, unresolved outcome issues, etc.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
In Dr. Karasu's hands the modern penchant for historical deconstruction becomes a powerful instrument for the analysis and clarification of the bewildering variety of clinical procedures currently labeled 'psychotherapy.' His tripartite categorization of those procedures as 'dynamic,' 'behavioral,' and 'experiential' provides the basis for his further delineation of the specific features that the individual psychotherapies share in common on the one hand, and that on the other, define each as a distinct entity in its own right. In so doing, Dr. Karasu has fashioned a detailed and illuminating map of the current jungle of proliferating psychotherapies that will serve as an invaluable guide for clinicians and investigators alike.
Otto F. Kernberg
In a scholarly overview of the major trends of contemporary psychotherapy, Dr. Karasu offers the reader a clear and comprehensive synthesis of the essential aspects of psychodynamic, behavioral, and experiential psychotherapeutic approaches. His deconstructive methodology naturally leads to a focus on major controversies affecting this field and the relevant research questions derived from these controversies. While critically exploring contemporary theories of mind, Dr. Karasu raises challenging questions about the relationship between theory and practice, between specific and non-specific effects of psychotherapeutic interventions, and between clinical practice and research in psychotherapy. The reader may agree or not with Dr. Karasu's rejection of all major present theory formulations, but will be enriched by the fundamental questions posed in this book. For the psychiatric resident, the practicing psychotherapist, and the mental health professional facing the contemporary psychotherapeutic scene, this volume offers a clarifying and organizing perspective on the essential tenets of competing theories, the corresponding research approaches, and a thoughtful and wise proposal regarding crucial common therapeutic factors across the wide spectrum of current psychotherapies.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781568218212
  • Publisher: Aronson, Jason Inc.
  • Publication date: 10/28/1996
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 160
  • Product dimensions: 5.22 (w) x 7.92 (h) x 0.52 (d)

Meet the Author

T. Byram Karasu, M.D., a graduate of the Yale School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, is presently the Silverman Professor and University Chairman of the Deparmtent of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Albert Einstien College of Medicine/Montefiore Medical Center, and the editor-in-chief of the American Journal of Psychotherapy. He is the author or editor of 20 books, including two novels, Of God and Madness and The Gotham Chronicles—The Culture of Sociopathy; a book of poetry, Rags of My Soul; the seminal work, Treatments of Psychiatric Disorders; and two best sellers, The Art of Serenity and The Spirit of Happiness. Dr. Karasu is a scholar, renowned clinician, teacher and lecturer, and the recipient of numerous awards. He lives in New York City.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Toksoz Karasu, Toksoz B. Karasu, Toksoz Byram Karasu
    2. Hometown:
      New York, New York, and Westport, Connecticut
    1. Date of Birth:
      February 11, 1935
    2. Place of Birth:
      Erzurum, Turkey
    1. Education:
      University of Istanbul School of Medicine, 1959; Yale University School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, 1969

Table of Contents

1 The Concept of Deconstruction 1
2 Deconstruction of Theories: Facts and Fictions 11
3 Deconstruction of the Therapeutic Troika: Current Overarching Paradigms of Psychotherapy 29
The Psychodynamic Paradigm 34
The Behavioral Paradigm 46
The Experiential Paradigm 57
4 Deconstruction of the Dualistic Dilemma: Specificity versus Nonspecificity of Cure 71
Concept 1: Sectarianism versus Eclecticism 76
Concept 2: Individuality versus Universality 79
Concept 3: Techniques versus Relationship 82
5 Deconstruction of the Scientific Schema: Problems of Psychotherapy Research 85
Research Design and Sample Selection 88
Methodologies and Assessment of Change 94
Cost-Effectiveness and Cost-Benefit 95
Statistical Issues and Strategies 96
Unresolved Outcome Issues 102
Conclusions 105
6 Reconstruction: From Separate Schools to Universal Healing Processes 109
Affective Experiencing 112
Cognitive Mastery 117
Behavioral Regulation 121
7 Epilogue: The End of Theory and the Last Therapist 127
References 137
Credits 151
Index 153
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