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Payn, S.B. (1982). Group and Family Therapy 1980: Lewis R. Wolberg, M. D., and Marvin L. Aronson, Ph.D., Eds., Brunner/Mazel, New York, 1980, 421 pp., $25.00.. J. Amer. Acad. Psychoanal., 10(2):324-326.

(1982). Journal of American Academy of Psychoanalysis, 10(2):324-326

Group and Family Therapy 1980: Lewis R. Wolberg, M. D., and Marvin L. Aronson, Ph.D., Eds., Brunner/Mazel, New York, 1980, 421 pp., $25.00.

Review by:
Stephen B. Payn, M.D.

This volume is the eighth in an annual series of original papers that cover the latest developments in group psychotherapy. The title has been changed from Group Therapy to the present title, in recognition of the growing importance of family therapy.

The book is divided into seven sections. The first section is a tribute to the originator of multiple family therapy, H. Peter Laqueur, who died in 1979 and to whom this volume is dedicated. Laqueur gives an overview of multiple family therapy, while Durkin shows how Laqueur combined Weiner's cybernetics with von Bertalanffy's general systems theory.

The next seven chapters form the section on Theoretical and Clinical Issues in Group Therapy. Bar-Levav evaluates the group-as-a-whole approach to group therapy and concludes that, in spite of some advantages it offers, it should be discarded as a regular therapeutic tool.

In an illuminating paper, Edrita Fried and Jaqueline A. Fried note that narcissistic patients manifest the imprint of early narcissistic injury, such as low self-esteem and a sense of loneliness, as well as defenses against it, such as grandiosity and aggression. For recovery the patients need the experience of acceptance, which the group supplies by encouraging them to reveal their vulnerability, by not being afraid of their rage, and by insisting on the expression of genuine emotion instead of dramatic gestures.

Grotjahn discusses the question of suitability for analytic group therapy. In his experience many people who do not succeed in analysis do well in group therapy.

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