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Semrad: The Heart of a Therapist [Hardcover]

Susan Rako

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Book Description

7 July 1977 0876686846 978-0876686843
For the past half-century, Harvard trained psychiatrists who learned their art and skill from a genius have quoted his observations about life in their work with patients and in teaching others the practice of psychotherapy.

Here is the unique and heralded collection of remarks by this extraordinary teacher, Dr. Elvin Semrad, originally recorded by Susan Rako and Harvey Mazer during residency-training at Harvard's Massachusetts Mental Health Center in the 1960's.

"The book brings the reader a sense of closeness to the personal, informal aspects of this man who combined knowledge, gentleness, and strength in a most unusual way."
--Otto Will, M.D.
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Jason Aronson Inc. Publishers (7 July 1977)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0876686846
  • ISBN-13: 978-0876686843
  • Product Dimensions: 22.9 x 15.7 x 2.3 cm
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,609,828 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Authors

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Product Description

About the Author

Susan Rako practices psychiatry in Newton, Massachusetts. She is the author of two groundbreaking books, The Hormone of Desire and The Blessings of the Curse: No More Periods? and of the memoir, That's How the Light Gets In: Memoir of a Psychiatrist.Harvey Mazer has an office in Harvard Square. He practices psychoanalysis, psychotherapy, and psychopharmacology. He is basically an optimist, and believes that someday the Red Sox once again will win the World Series. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.2 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quiet Wisdom 9 July 2011
By Kent T. Hoffman - Published on
Elvin Semrad clearly taught with wisdom to spare. The simplicity, presence, and quiet empathy with which this man speaks is all too often missing in the learning process for psychotherapists. Too much focus lands on technique and knowledge; not enough where the action is most required: "being with." Semrad was a master at "being with" - a clinician focused on providing the unspoken structure and confidence in change that allows psychotherapy to actually happen. Long after our prized techniques have fallen by the wayside, years after our clients forget our words and our insights, they will remember what Semrad continued to base the psychotherapeutic encounter upon: one real person in the presence of another real person unwilling to impose answers, fully willing to respect the gradual process of transformation. This can't be taught, but it can be shared. This volume comes as close as a book can to offering that sharing.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Semrad by those who knew him 2 April 2011
By Susan Winters Smith - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I learned about Semrad from a friend of mine who was a Psychiatrist trained under Semrad. Everything he said about him was verified by these authors who also knew him and studied with him. Everyone considering being a therapist should read this book. Anyone who wants to help a fellow human being through their trials and sorrows could benefit from reading this book. Semrad was the master. The authors have captured well his philosophies, his methods, his heart. If you read this you might get an understanding of what it is to "sit with" another person and to hear them out, to empathize. That is everything. Semrad invented 'empathy'.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Semrad the Great 19 Jan 2013
By Sarah - Published on
For every therapist who thinks they know a lot about doing therapy. Makes a superb gift. Only wish it was available in hardcover.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Should be required reading for all counselors and therapists. 2 Oct 2013
By Andy L. Gentry - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
had written down in college to read this book and finally I did. At just the right time it was Word therapy for my soul.
0 of 12 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Incomprehensible 25 Jun 2011
By Michael D. Zentman - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I have been a trained psychoanalyst for the past 22 years and find this book of Dr. Semrad's thoughts to be utterly incomprehensible. I feel like I am reading a psychoanalytic version of the 1979 film Being There and that Dr. Semrad's followers were as mesmerized as the characters were by Chauncey Gardener. The ideas published in this book are, at best, obvious and self-evident and, at worst, meaningless and insulting to women . I am shocked that this would be published for public consumption.
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