IPT Book Reviews

Title: Handbook of Individual Therapy  Positive Review
Editor: Windy Dryden
Publisher: Sage Publications, Inc., 1996

Sage Publications, Inc.
2455 Teller Road
Thousand Oaks, CA 91320
(805) 499-0721
$79.95 (c); $32.95 (p)

Psychotherapy is a diverse endeavor. There are many names used to describe what purport to be different therapy approaches. All have in common, however, people talking to each other in an artificial relationship that is intended to be helpful to one person while the other is the helper. This heterogeneity can be rather confusing. This 413-page edited handbook can help sort out some of that confusion. After an initial chapter that describes the current scene in English psychotherapy, 12 therapy approaches are described.

Each chapter follows the same scheme which increases the ability of the reader to compare them. In each case the theoretical assumptions of the therapy are discussed. These include how emotional disturbance develops and is maintained. Next, the practice of the therapy is presented, including goals, selecting what is to be done that benefits the patient, what makes effective therapists, and the therapy relationship. Therapy strategies, changes, and limitations are also explored. A case example is then given to illustrate the actual therapy.

Chapters 2 to 4 are psychoanalytic, including Freudian, Kleinian, and Jungian. Adlerian, person-centered, personal construct, existential, gestalt therapy, and transactional analysis are chapters 5 to 10. Cognitive, behavior, and rational emotive behavior therapy are chapters 11 to 13. The final two chapters, 14 and 15, summarize the research on outcomes of psychotherapy and how therapists are trained and supervised. All in all, this book presents good material that is well-organized, succinct and helpful to anyone who wants to sort out psychotherapy.

Reviewed by Ralph Underwager, Institute for Psychological Therapies.

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