The interpersonal approach to group psychotherapy

Department of Psychiatry, Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto, Ontario.
International Journal of Group Psychotherapy (Impact Factor: 0.44). 02/1992; 42(1):37-62. DOI: 10.4324/9780203941621
Source: PubMed


The interpersonal model of group psychotherapy emphasizes the critical nature of peer interactions and consequent dynamic interpersonal learning. The author illustrates basic concepts of the model through a series of clinical vignettes. The central importance of the group as a social microcosm, cohesion and group process, here-and-now activation, and corrective emotional experience are documented, as is the role of the therapist in facilitating interpersonal feedback and effective therapeutic work.

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Available from: Molyn Leszcz, Oct 08, 2014
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    • "The leader offers some initial perspectives on definitions: metaphors are an effort to understand and experience one thing or experience in terms of another (Lakoff & Johnson, 1980), and metaphors express what is ineffable and refer directly or indirectly to ourselves, significant others, a psychic event, or an interpersonal experience (Rizzuto, 2001). The leader notes that the group is interpersonally oriented (Leszcz, 1992) and the leader's role is to help the group work with the metaphors that emerge and to encourage exploration of cultural differences and similarities. The leader does not seek to introduce metaphors, but tracks and works with the metaphors that the group members provide. "
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    ABSTRACT: Cultural differences and similarities provide rich opportunities for interpersonal learning, understanding, and growth. Metaphors may help group leaders and members explore pertinent cultural issues. Illustrations from an interpersonally oriented process group demonstrate the use of metaphors to facilitate multicultural understanding.
    Group 08/2002; 26(3):219-231. DOI:10.1023/A:1021061110951
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    • "The therapist role is relatively transparent, with frequent use of self-disclosure and purposeful demystifying of one's expert position. 'The therapist in this model of group therapy will be very active but he will be active in the interest of stimulating activity on the part of group members and with the aim of making the group less rather than more leader dependent' (Leszcz 1992, p. 56). Given the adolescent struggle for autonomy, difficulty with authority, and focus on peer relations, this therapeutic position provides the needed structure, and focus on autonomy, independence and interpersonal interactions. "
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    ABSTRACT: Existential psychotherapy provides a useful perspective, or lens through which to view the practice of group psychotherapy. The field encompasses a variety of theoretical and practical points of view, many not usually thought of as existential. Some relate to the therapist, some to the enterprise of psychotherapy, and some to conceptions of psychic or external reality. This paper identifies several of these vertices, emphasizing especially (1) the importance of relationship in psychotherapy, (2) the problem of meaning (3) addressing existential concerns, especially the centrality of death as a problem in living, and (4) the task of the therapist. Attention is paid to the historical development of these ideas. The work of Martin Buber, Otto Rank, Wilfred Bion, and Viktor Frankl is especially emphasized, although proto-existential concepts from other waters are also noted. The heart of the paper deals with the application of these vertices to group psychotherapy. Extensive attention will be given to the differing viewpoints of Hugh Mullan and Irvin Yalom. Practical applications in group psychotherapy, including clinical vignettes, are offered.
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