Directly inspired by the work of Jerome D. Frank and his
field-defining book "Persuasion and Healing," this volume of essays
by distinguished contemporary scholars broadly assesses the current
state of research and practice in psychotherapy.
Editors Renato D. Alarcon, a former student of Frank's, and
Julia B. Frank, Jerome Frank's daughter and coauthor, bring diverse
perspectives to the volume. Each chapter, based on one of the
themes of Frank's classic book, offers honest critique and fearless
criticism of psychotherapy as it has evolved in the twenty-first
century. Contributors update classical psychotherapeutic concepts
such as demoralization, hope, meaning, rhetoric, and cultural
variation and add new insight into how the neuroscience revolution
affects our understanding of mental organization and psychotherapy.
As Frank did in his own time, these authors challenge the claims
made for the specificity or superiority of cognitive behavioral,
psychodynamic, and other varieties of psychotherapy, providing a
candid assessment of the value and limitations of many competing
approaches to diagnosis and treatment. They also focus attention on
psychotherapies for special populations, including children, people
with serious medical illness, and those from culturally and
religiously diverse backgrounds.
Like "Persuasion and Healing, " this volume advocates not for
any particular approach but for psychotherapy more generally
grounded in principles of evolutionary biology, culture, narrative,
and behavior change. It provides researchers, theorists, and
practitioners of every kind of training with a genuinely
phenomenological approach to a wide range of psychiatric issues.
Echoing Frank's voice, in particular his emphasis on the
commonalities of suffering and the therapeutic power of hope, "The
Psychotherapy of Hope" offers scholarly wisdom and practical advice
on how to understand psychotherapy--and apply its principles to the
greatest benefit of patients.
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