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January 1964

Therapist-Patient Expectancies in Psychotherapy.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1964;10(1):97-98. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1964.01720190099019

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This is a valuable book. Using 342 references, Goldstein provides a comprehensive, wellorganized, and critical review of the literature in a difficult and controversial field, that of the relationship between patient's and therapist's expectations in psychotherapy and the actual outcome of the therapeutic work itself ("expectancy-in-therapy" research). He includes a review of the placebo effect, suggests "spontaneous recovery" is a misnomer, recounts his and others' experiments critically, and struggles to put the "elusive art of psychotherapy on a firm scientific foundation."

This book also deals with a difficult and significant subject, namely, what specifically is therapeutic about therapy? The author's primary focus is on expectancy research, ie, the influence of expectations on events in therapy, the mutuality and reciprocity of expectational processes, etc. The primary theoretical orientation appears to be social learning theory and perception. Human behavior is seen as basically anticipatory rather than reactive. Expectations are seen as

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