Psychotherapy: A Dynamic Approach

Psychotherapy: A Dynamic Approach

Psychotherapy: A Dynamic Approach

Psychotherapy: A Dynamic Approach

Excerpt

In the years since the first edition of this volume was published, psychoanalysis has come under increasing attack from a large number of sources, both inside and outside the field of psychiatry. Most of this criticism and depreciation is directed toward psychoanalysis as a specific treatment- method, and involves such things as the occurrence of therapeutic limitations, issues of statistical cure rates, and its lack of applicability as a general therapeutic instrument for the treatment of the majority of psychiatrically ill patients.

In the area of the general understanding of human behaviour, and in the further development of psychoanalytic theory, there have likewise been continuing pressures for modification and change. Generally speaking these criticisms have been more temperate, and focused at the substance of elaborations or modifications of basic theory, and of continuing attempts to derive methods for verification or validation of psychoanalytic observations and postulates. Many of these criticisms and suggested modifications arise from scientific work using both the psychoanalytic method and experimental or observational approaches other than psychoanalysis per se. These issues generally represent the applications of the scientific method and a progressive evolution of concepts which occur as part of any scientific discipline that seeks to advance human knowledge and understanding.

However, most of the basic concepts with which this book deals (such as the existence of unconscious motivational forces within the mind, the dynamic steady state, homeostasis and psychic equilibrium, the structural model of mental functioning, concepts of transference and counter- transference, the genetic and dynamic approaches to understanding of human behaviour, the interrelationships between the individual's intrapsychic experience and his external environment, etc.) remain as corner stones of present-day psychiatric understanding. Although the vocabulary and semantics may differ somewhat, such conceptualizations from psychoanalytic experience and understanding are deeply imbedded in the current stream of thinking in modern psychiatry. Whether the focus of therapeutic . . .

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