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Existential Counselling & Psychotherapy in Practice Hardcover – 1 Dec 2001

3.6 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 242 pages
  • Publisher: Sage Publications UK; 2 edition (1 Dec. 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0761962239
  • ISBN-13: 978-0761962236
  • Product Dimensions: 15.6 x 1.4 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,639,102 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

'Existential Counselling in Practice was without doubt one of the classic texts in this field, and of considerable significance for the wider landscape of therapy too. Existential Counselling & Psychotherapy in Practice is bound to ensure that van Deurzen's practical wisdom continues to influence the future development of existential psychotherapy and counselling for many more years to come' - Simon du Plock, Journal of the Society for Existential Analysis

'Van Deurzen's introduction to existential counselling is outstanding and almost entirely devoid of the linguistic contortions which characterize some of the philosophical literature underpinning the field. For those with an interest in the practical side of existential approaches to counselling and psychotherapy - emphasising the challenges of living in the world rather than focusing on personal psychopathology - I can recommend none better' - CounsellingResource.com

From the Publisher

This title is available in a paperback edition


Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I found this exposition of the art of existential counselling most illuminating and perceptive. It contains a thorough introduction to the techniques and complexities with many fascinating examples from the author's own experience. The book is lucid and well written.
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By A Customer on 12 Mar. 2003
Format: Paperback
Emmy van Deurzen has written a solid commonsense book about the way she as an existentialist practises psychotherapy. Most people find existentialist philosophy very heavy going and give up before they grasp the basics.van Duerzen clearly writes from the heart as someone who lives by existentialist values. If you are looking for 'a how to do' guide this is not going to suit your purposes. If however you would like to view counselling and psychotherapy through the experienced eye of a wise person you really should give this a try- I think it is rather wonderful!
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By A Customer on 13 Jan. 2004
Format: Paperback
Very interesting reading through the case studies. This book gives the reader a good idea of the sort of problems that existential psychotherapy deals with. A very good starting point and Emmy Van Deurzen Smith's other books are also worth purchasing to find out more. Well worth it.
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Format: Paperback
Wnenever I approach a book on existential therapy I always feel rather excited at the prospect of gaining further insight into the human condition from what promises to be an exciting form of therapy; yet I invariably come away from the book feeling disappointed, and I'm afraid this volume has been no exception. Ms van Deurzen obviously knows and loves her subject, and is clearly a leading figure in this field. Unfortunately, though the title of this book suggests that it might be something of a handbook for practising therapists, I found very little here that was of practical use.
As Ms van Deurzen makes clear,the themes of this type of therapy - and of existentialism in general - are fundamental. They concern issues of life and death, of meaning, of purpose, of choices and freewill. Yet in existential texts these fundamental themes are often developed and elaborated until the points being made become either incomprehensible, or just plain woolly. For my part, the most interesting part of this book concerned her approach to dreams, which I felt was insightful, and made a refreshing change to the interpretative approach of the psychoanalysts.
Nonetheless, one of the numerous doubts I have about this type of therapy is its apparent exclusivity. To an extent, all therapy relies on a client who is willing to engage with it, yet existential therapy seems to require a degree of philosophical-mindedness from clients that most simply will not have.
Another objection is that,just like psychoanalysis - which it clearly tries to distance itself from - this therapy has a tendency to complicate problems that don't need complicating. Sometimes a fear of falling off ladders is a fear of falling off ladders, and not an ontological crisis.
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Format: Paperback
I bought this book in the belief that Ms Van Deurzen might be able to tell me what existential therapy is. I should have read the review on the back by David Smail, who says "...this is not a book setting out a system or founding a school of therapy...". One wonders what it is in that case. This is indeed a book which fails to set out anything very clearly at all apart from the chapter summaries, which provide a synopsis of what little the book actually says about what existential therapy is. In the end, it is an example of how many words can say very little. Any reader wishing to make sense of what this kind of psychotherapy is - from Ms Van Deurzen's point of view at least - may well find themselves quite baffled by how little clarity £17.99 will buy you these days. I understand the hardback version is £60. In the end, one might learn more about existential therapy by spending a night in a graveyard. This book does not do existential therapy justice and is quite simply to be avoided by anyone serious about the approach.
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