Genes on the Couch: Explorations in Evolutionary Psychotherapy [NOOK Book]

Overview

Philosophers and therapists have long theorised about how psychological mechanisms for love, jealousy, anxiety, depression and many other human characteristics may have evolved over millions of years. In the dawn of the new insights on evolution, provided by Darwin's theories of natural selection, Freud, Jung and Klein sought to identify and understand human motives, emotions and information processing as functions deeply-rooted in our evolved history. Despite this promising start and major developments in modern...
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Genes on the Couch: Explorations in Evolutionary Psychotherapy

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Overview

Philosophers and therapists have long theorised about how psychological mechanisms for love, jealousy, anxiety, depression and many other human characteristics may have evolved over millions of years. In the dawn of the new insights on evolution, provided by Darwin's theories of natural selection, Freud, Jung and Klein sought to identify and understand human motives, emotions and information processing as functions deeply-rooted in our evolved history. Despite this promising start and major developments in modern evolutionary psychology, anthropology and sociobiology, the last fifty years has seen little in the way of therapies derived from an evolutionary understanding of human psychology. The contributors to this timely book illuminate how an evolution focused approach to psychopathology can offer new insights for different schools of therapy and provide a rationale for therapeutic integration.
Genes on the Couch brings together respected clinicians who have integrated evolutionary insights into their case conceptualisations and therapeutic interventions. Various psychotherapy schools are represented, and each author provides illustrative examples of the interventions used. Specific topics addressed include the nature of evolved mental mechanisms; regulation/dysregulation of internal processes; attachment and kinship in therapy; the importance of internalising warmth as a therapeutic goal; kin selection and incest avoidance; co-operation and deception in social relations; difficulties in working with certain male clients; gender differences in therapy and the roles of shame and guilt in treatment.
Providing up-to-date summaries of recent thinking in this increasing important but diverse area, Genes on the Couch will be of interest to psychotherapists, psychiatrists and a wide range of mental health professionals.

The book contains black-and-white illustrations.

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Editorial Reviews

Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Diana Marta, BSN, RN (Rush University Medical Center)
Description: This is a thought-provoking compilation of articles on evolutionary theory and how it helps us to understand who we are as humans, and why some people suffer various psychopathologies and how professionals might alleviate some of that suffering. Many of the authors go on to discuss how these evolutionary theories might be applied to clinical practice and psychotherapy.
Purpose: With the growth in sociobiology, evolutionary psychology and related disciplines over the last century, this book looks to examine some of the new models and interventions in psychotherapy that may develop based on these ideas and explore the direction future practice may take. It suggests that no matter what school of thought is examined (instinctual, archetypal, biochemical, or pathological), evolutionary theory may actually afford a structure capable of integrating them all.
Audience: The book is aimed mainly at practitioners (therapists and psychoanalysts) and scholars who are interested in the etiology of behavior and thought and what needs to develop when those behaviors fall outside the norm. While it may be a little too complex for the general public, it certainly fits in with the current emphasis on genetics and helps illuminate how psychopathologies are passed on and develop over generations. The authors come from universities and research centers throughout the world, though their individual credentials are not listed.
Features: This book explores both how evolutionary theory relates to each of the major psychoanalytic schools of thought and how the processes of socialization, gender role development, and attachment, for example, can help to explain even modern-day behaviors. Essentially it finds that the origins of behavior may go back further than even primal urges to techniques required for survival of the species. For those who want to explore individual topics further there are references listed at the end of each article, as well as an index by author and by subject at the end of the book.
Assessment: Anything that challenges complacency or offer a fresh perspective on understanding psychopathologies has value. While some of the theories are somewhat convoluted and others perhaps too simplistic, I found myself rethinking and reframing previous encounters with patients. I would have preferred the use of more case studies just to enliven some of the theory. But overall, I found this compilation of articles stimulating and worthwhile.

3 Stars from Doody
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781317711131
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 7/10/2014
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 376
  • File size: 2 MB

Table of Contents

List of contributors vii
Acknowledgements ix
Section I Theory and principles 1
1 Evolutionary psychotherapy: Principles and outline 3
2 Psychotherapy in the context of Darwinian psychiatry 28
3 Evolution, kinship, and psychotherapy: Promoting psychological health through human relationships 42
Section II Evolutionary psychotherapies 69
4 Evolutionary psychoanalysis: Toward an adaptive, biological perspective on the clinical process in psychoanalytic psychotherapy 71
5 Jungian analysis and evolutionary psychotherapy: An integrative approach 93
6 Social mentalities: Internal 'social' conflict and the role of inner warmth and compassion in cognitive therapy 118
7 Social intelligence, deception, and psychopathology: A challenge for cognitive therapy? 151
8 Reluctant males: Evolutionary perspectives on male psychology in couples therapy 176
9 Gender and psychotherapy: An evolutionary perspective 196
Section III Special issues 209
10 The evolution of incest avoidance: Oedipus and the psychopathologies of kinship 211
11 Disorganized attachment, models of borderline states and evolutionary psychotherapy 232
12 The syndrome of rejection sensitivity: An evolutionary perspective 257
13 Pathogenic beliefs and guilt in human evolution: Implications for psychotherapy 276
14 The psychotherapy of shame-related pathology from an evolutionary perspective 304
Section IV Overview and concluding comments 331
15 Evolutionary psychotherapy: Where to from here? 333
Author index 349
Subject index 363
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