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Johnson, A.M. Ludwig, A.O. (1954). IV. Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy: Dynamic Criteria for Treatment Choice. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 2:346-350.

(1954). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 2:346-350

IV. Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy: Dynamic Criteria for Treatment Choice

Adelaide M. Johnson, M.D. and Alfred O. Ludwig, M.D.

The panel discussion was opened with a presentation by Joseph O. Chassell. By an empirical study of a sampling of cases, illustrating a variety of treatment plans, he attempted to draw some conclusions as to the dynamics of therapy, and the essential conditions for therapy. With the hypothesis that the need for a certain type of therapeutic relationship is the touchstone, he proceeded to a consideration of how to go about recognizing and anticipating types of relationship need, how to classify patients from this point of view, and what suggestions to offer about treatment approaches.

Chassel attempted to identify some significantly different treatment types, not in classical analysis, and where something genuinely therapeutic took place. Ten inpatients in intensive therapy, and ten outpatients seen on a once-a-week basis, were studied. The following questions were asked in each instance:

1. What was the treatment plan and what became of it?

2. Who was responsible for the choice of actual treatment?

3. What really happened therapeutically?

In his discussion Chassell endeavored to phrase his observations and his hypotheses in other than psychoanalytic terms in order to promote freshness of perception and rethinking of concepts. He stated that in the interpersonal relation called psychotherapy, the therapist aims at becoming an auxiliary ego to the patient's, introjected as friendly. After initial valuation, true therapy probably needs some personal commitment on the part of the therapist.

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