Theories and Applications of Counseling and Psychotherapy provides students with the foundational knowledge needed to implement various therapeutic approaches in individual and family counseling. The dynamic author team presents theories through a multicultural and social justice-oriented lens, including evidence to support each theory. Students will embrace chapter concepts through vibrant illustrations and relevant examples from movies, TV shows, photographs, paintings, musical lyrics, news articles, and other sources presented throughout.

Psychoanalytic Theory

Psychoanalytic Theory

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Learning Objectives

After reading this chapter, each student should be able to:

  • Discuss the case of William S.
  • Summarize the historical context of psychoanalytic theory.
  • Evaluate Sigmund Freud’s contribution.
  • Critique the basic concepts of psychoanalytic theory.
  • Assess the therapeutic process of psychoanalytic theory.
  • Explain deviations from Freudian theory and therapy.
  • Appraise the benefits and limitations of psychoanalytic theory with respect to multiculturalism and social justice (e.g., working with diverse populations).
  • Describe the relevance of psychoanalytic theory to the current-day practice of counseling.


This chapter provides an overview of psychoanalytic theory and practice and includes other areas of interest intended to provide the reader a broader and more thorough understanding of Sigmund Freud’s impact on counseling and psychotherapy (i.e., historical information provided later is based on publications by Gay [1989] and ...

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