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September 1960

Nature of Psychotherapist's Contribution to Treatment Process: Some Research Results and Speculations

Author Affiliations

Chapel Hill, N.C.
From the University of North Carolina, School of Medicine.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1960;3(3):219-231. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1960.01710030005002

In this paper I shall make an attempt to present some of the thinking which has gone into our research program in psychotherapy, briefly allude to some of the results we have obtained, and dwell at some length upon questions that have continued to engage our attention. If it is true that one of the fruits of scientific work is the ability to ask better questions, I feel I have made some progress.

Some years ago I became interested in the study of psychotherapeutic techniques and found that very little empirical research had been done on the problem. Not only were there few published investigations on the subject but there were also few systematic expositions about psychotherapeutic technique, not excluding the psychoanalytic literature. Apart from Freud's well-known papers on technique very little attention had been given to the problem in print (Fenichel, 1941), and even considering the fecundity

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