• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

This stimulating book explores the long-standing relationship between psychotherapy and politics and argues that from the beginning psychotherapy has had a political face. Documenting instances where ideas from psychotherapy have been incorporated into the political agenda, the book demonstrates the practical value of psychotherapy as an instigator of social and political change. Related to this, attempts to understand and evaluate political life through the application of psychotherapeutic concepts are examined. The author poses a number of key questions, including: What is human nature? Are aggression and violence innate in us? Is the therapeutic relationship inherently unequal? And, is the political an a

Beyond Therapy?
Beyond therapy?

Here I want to offer some examples of initiatives which have begun within or been inspired by therapy, but which have aimed to leave the therapeutic arena entirely and develop a new sort of political practice. They are a mixed bunch, including co-counselling, which is often considered a form of psychotherapy but has dropped some of therapy's key features; Hillman's and Ventura's stab at a re-foundation of therapy on new lines; the MO's practical application of Wilhelm Reich's psycho-political vision; and David Smail's argument that therapy needs to be replaced with a moral and ethical framework of ‘taking care’.


Co-counselling makes a simple and profound challenge to psychotherapy: it disputes the role of the therapist as expert. In place of the specialist practitioner, ...

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