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Cooper, A.M. (1994). Forty-Two Lives in Treatment: A Study of Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy: By Robert S. Wallerstein. New York: Guilford Press, 1985, 784 pp., $50.00.. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 42:264-268.

(1994). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 42:264-268

Forty-Two Lives in Treatment: A Study of Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy: By Robert S. Wallerstein. New York: Guilford Press, 1985, 784 pp., $50.00.

Review by:
Arnold M. Cooper, M.D.

The Menninger Foundation Psychotherapy Research Project, PRP, begun in 1954, has been a major laboratory for the methodology of psychotherapy research as well as a source of information about psychotherapy and psychoanalysis. There have been at least four previous books describing aspects of this study, and now Wallerstein, in this massive work, probably the last major study to be derived from the PRP, has attempted to provide "an overall statement of what we have learned clinically from the variety of cases studied, from each individually and from the whole number … about what happens in psychotherapy—and more, a statement of what we have learned from what has happened or not happened that could beneficially alter our technique and practice" (p. 8). The book is successful in providing new insights into the nature of change and its relation to different modalities of treatment, the relation between supportive and expressive techniques in various forms of psychotherapy, and the interrelations of insight, conflict resolution, and varieties of supportive techniques. Because of Wallerstein's extraordinary range of interest and scholarship, almost every aspect of psychoanalysis and psychotherapy is discussed, with the cases providing clinical illustration and the basis for the analysis of the major research issues emerging from the careful qualitative study of each individual patient. Psychoanalysts will find that this book poses major challenges to some of our most traditional and comfortable assumptions.

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