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Family Therapy: History, Theory, and Practice / Edition 3

Family Therapy: History, Theory, and Practice / Edition 3

by Samuel T. Gladding


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780130167200
Publisher: Pearson
Publication date: 06/28/2001
Edition description: Older Edition
Pages: 496
Product dimensions: 7.70(w) x 9.40(h) x 1.10(d)

Table of Contents

Part One Understanding Families and Family Dynamics

Chapter 1: Individual and Family Life Cycles

Chapter 2: Healthy and Dysfunctional Families

Part Two Therapeutic Approaches to Working with Families

Chapter 3: Rationale and History of Family Therapy

Chapter 4: The Process of Family Therapy

Chapter 5: Couple and Marriage Enrichment and Therapy

Chapter 6: Psychodynamic and Bowen Family Therapies

Chapter 7: Experiential Family Therapies

Chapter 8: Behavioral and Cognitive—Behavioral Family Therapies

Chapter 9: Structural Family Therapy

Chapter 10: Strategic and Systemic Family Therapies

Chapter 11: Solution-Focused and Narrative Family Therapies

Part Three Special Populations in Family Therapy

Chapter 12: Working with Single-Parent Families

Chapter 13: Working with Remarried Families

Chapter 14: Working with Culturally Diverse Families

Chapter 15: Working with Substance-Related Disorders, Domestic Violence, Child Abuse, and Infidelity

Part Four Professional Issues and Research in Family Therapy

Chapter 16: Ethical, Legal, and Professional Issues in Families

Chapter 17: Research and Assessment in Family Therapy


Appendix A AAMFT Code of Ethics

Appendix B Ethical Code for the International Association of Marriage and Family Counselors


Author Index

Subject Index



Therapeutic work with families is a recent scientific phenomenon but an ancient art. Throughout human history, designated persons in all cultures have helped couples and families cope, adjust, and grow. In the United States, the interest in assisting families within a healing context is both a twentieth and twenty-first century movement. Family life has always been of interest, but because of economic, social, political, and spiritual values, outsiders made little direct intervention, outside of social work, into ways of helping family functioning until the 1920s. Now, there are literally thousands of professionals who focus their attention and skills on improving family dynamics and relationships.

In examining how professionals work to assist families, the reader should keep in mind that there are as many ways of offering help as there are families. However, the most widely recognized methods are counseling, therapy, educational enrichment, and prevention. The general umbrella term for remediation work with families is family therapy. This concept includes the type of work done by family professionals who identify themselves by different titles including counselors, psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, nurses, and clergy.

Family therapy is not a perfect term; politically it gets bandied about by a number of professional associations such as the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT), the American Counseling Association, the American Psychological Association (APA), and the National Association of Social Workers. Physicians who treat families also debate this term, as well as whether as doctors they are"family therapists" or engaged in the practice of medicine and therefore "family medical specialists." For purposes of this book, the generic term family therapy is used because of its wide acceptance among the public and professionals who engage in the practice of helping families. Within this term, some aspects of educational enrichment and prevention are included.


As a comprehensive text, this book focuses on multiple aspects of family therapy. Part One introduces the reader to the various ways in which families develop and the characteristics of healthy and dysfunctional families. Part Two examines the rationale and history of family therapy, its general processes, and the main theoretical approaches to working therapeutically with families: Adlerian/psychodynamic, Bowenian, experiential, behavioral and cognitive-behavioral, structural, strategic, systemic (Milan), solution focused, and narrative. Each theoretical chapter emphasizes the major theorists of the approach, premises, techniques, process/outcome, and unique aspects of the theory. A case illustration is provided also.

Part Three examines issues and dynamics in working with special family forms—singleparent families, remarried families, culturally diverse families, and addictive/abusive families—as well as the different therapeutic approaches used, according to family type and background. Finally, Part Four discusses ethical, legal, and professional issues in being a family therapist. It also explores research and assessment in family therapy.

New to This Edition

The third edition of Family Therapy has been thoroughly updated with new and relevant sources. It has been strengthened to include a greater emphasis on family health, a more complete integration of issues related to diversity and gender, and an expanded discussion of professional identity and ethics. Another added feature is a new chapter on working with families who suffer from substance-related disorders, domestic violence, and child abuse. A student workbook, Exercises in Family Therapy by Mark E. Young, Monserrat Casado, and Scott Rasmus, now accompanies the text. It includes case studies, structured exercises, and questions to help the student reflect on material presented in the book.

A Personal Note

In undertaking the writing of this work, I have been informed not only by massive amounts of reading in the rapidly growing field of family therapy but also by my own experiences during the past 25 years of therapeutically working with families. Both my family of origin and current family of procreation have influenced me as well. In addition, because I belong to the AAMFT, the International Association for Marriage and Family Counseling, and Division 43 (Family Psychology) of the APA, I have tried to view families and family therapy from the broadest base possible. Readers should find information within this work that will help them gain a clear perspective on the field of family therapy and those involved with it.

Like the authors of most books, I truly hope you as a reader enjoy and benefit from the contents of this text. It is my wish that when you complete your reading you will have gained a greater knowledge of family therapy, including aspects of therapy that affect you personally as well as professionally. If such is the case, then you will have benefited and possibly changed, and I, as an author, will have accomplished the task I set out to do.


I am grateful to the reviewers who spent many hours critiquing the first edition of this book: James Bitter, California State University at Fullerton; Donald Bubenzer, Kent State University; Harper Gaushell, Northeast Louisiana University; J. Scott Hinkle, University of North Carolina at Greensboro; Gloria Lewis, Loyola University of Chicago; Donald Mattson, University of South Dakota; Eugene R. Moan, Northern Arizona University; and Tom Russo, University of Wisconsin, River Falls.

I also gratefully acknowledge the contributions of time and insightful suggestions from reviewers for the second edition: Charles P Barnard, University of Wisconsin-Stout; Peter Emerson, Southeastern Louisiana University; and Eugene R. Moan, Northern Arizona University.

Reviewers for the third edition of the book who provided me with valuable input were Michael Carns, Southwest Texas State University; Thomas A. Cornille, Florida State University; Merith Cosden, University of California, Santa Barbara; Vonda Jump, Utah State University; and Jeffrey M. Smith, Kent State University.

I especially thank Virginia Perry of Summit School, my graduate assistants, Michele Kielty and Jenny Cole, and the program manager of the Counselor Education Program, Pamela Karr, all of Wake Forest University, for their constructive and positive input and for the painstaking way they helped me assemble this text. I am also indebted to my editor at Merrill/Prentice Hall, Kevin Davis, for his tireless effort, support, and assistance on my behalf.

This text is dedicated to my family, especially my parents. My father died in April 1994, at the age of 84, shortly after I completed the first edition of this text. My mother died more recently in August 2000, two months short of turning 90, just as I was finishing up this third edition of the book. The love and courage of both my parents along with the legacy left to me by previous generations of my family have affected me positively. I know I am most fortunate.

Finally, I am grateful for the support, encouragement, and comfort of my wife, Claire, who has insisted throughout this effort that we talk and build our marriage. She has employed all of her communication skills, including a generous dose of humor, to help me be a better spouse. She has also been throughout these years my partner, friend, and lover in the raising of our three children: Benjamin, Nathaniel, and Timothy.

Samuel T. Gladding

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