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Psychotherapy clients as human phenomena.

Authors
  • Etzi, Janet L
Type
Published Article
Journal
American journal of psychotherapy
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2008
Volume
62
Issue
1
Pages
83–96
Identifiers
PMID: 18461845
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

In this article, clients of psychotherapy are viewed as human phenomena. Viewing them as such reestablishes the true subject matter of psychotherapy. The psychotherapy project includes understanding as opposed to explanation, as one of its essential components. As psychotherapists engage in understanding their clients, they find themselves focusing on subjectivity and interiority, both their clients' and their own. Viewing psychotherapy clients as human phenomena to be understood, in contrast to viewing them as cases to be explained, shifts the therapist's focus to a more complex and interpersonally engaged process, which includes the therapist's interior life as well as the client's. Phenomenology provides the means for articulating the true subject matter of psychotherapy, and shifts the focus from a medical model approach to a human science approach.

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