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Dr. Glasser, author of Mental Health or Mental Illness (p. 944, 1960), presents here a dynamic therapeutic approach which tilts with Freudian and other depth analyses. In many ways absolutely antithetical to Freudian analysis, reality therapy challenges the validity of the reality of mental illness itself. Viewing clinical types as under-socialized, hampered not by too high standards but by too low past and present performance. The emphasis is on what, not why, on present actions and accomplishments; the therapist proceeds by providing meaningful, directive involvement until such time as the patient can perform effectively on his own, to fulfill his needs (not Freud's sex and aggression, but relatedness and respect are at the heart of the matter). Dr. Glasser describes the functioning of reality therapy in several settings, referring to specific cases at the Ventura School for seriously delinquent adolescent girls; in a chronic psychiatric ward at a Veterans Administration hospital; in office practice, and in the public school. A pragmatic rather than a philosophic orientation is at work here, one that offers promise for effective, widespread application. Of professional interest.

Pub Date: March 10th, 1965
Publisher: Harper & Row