Potentials and Pathologies of Character Structure Theory (EABP 2006)

Potentials and Pathologies of Character Structure Theory (EABP 2006) 2017-04-07T19:07:08+00:00

Project Description

Character Structure theory is a central aspect of Reichian and neo-Reichian Body Psychotherapy, and its underlying holistic 'functionalism' has stood the test of time. In its expanded and integrated form, as presented by Stephen Johnson ("Character Styles", 1994), it provides a solid diagnostic and clinically relevant developmental model that is compatible with other dynamic psychotherapeutic approaches. As a comprehensive body/mind map of pathology it is more coherent and applicable than DSM IV. However, as applied throughout the tradition of Body Psychotherapy, character structure theory also contains inconsistencies and shadow aspects and - as every other therapeutic tool or concept - can be used in counter-therapeutic ways or can acquire counter-therapeutic functions in the relationship between client and therapist. Many of us have always had difficulty with its pathologising, medical terminology, but this is just a surface symptom - the real problems with the model run far deeper. In this workshop I would like to extend and expand our model so it can be used in both 'medical model' and relational ways of working. This will involve questioning the contradictions inherent in the model, following through its implicit assumptions and adapting it in order to do justice to the complexities of the transference-countertransference process. This has significant theoretical implications, but more importantly it affects our technique and relational stance as Body Psychotherapists.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]"

 

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