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Genes on the Couch: Explorations in Evolutionary Psychology

by Paul Gilbert

Publisher: Brunner-Routledge
Publication Date: Friday, December 15, 2000
Number of Pages: 368
ISBN: 1583911022

Book Summary:

Philosophers and therapists have long theorized about how psychological mechanisms for love, jealousy, anxiety, depression, and many other human characteristics may have evolved over millions of years. In the dawn of the new insights on evolution, provided by Darwin's theories of natural selection, Freud, Jung, and Klein sought to identify and understand human motives, emotions, and information processing as functions deeply-rooted in our evolved history. Despite this promising start and major developments in modern evolutionary psychology, anthropology, and sociobiology, the last fifty years have seen little in the way of therapies derived from an evolutionary understanding of human psychology. the contributors to this timely book illuminate how an evolution-focused approach to psychopathology can offer new insights for different schools of therapy and provide a rationale for therapeutic integration.

Genes on the Couch brings together respected clinicians who have integrated evolutionary insights into their case conceptualization and therapeutic interventions. Various psychotherapy schools are represented, and each author provides illustrative examples of the interventions used. Specific topics addressed include the nature of evolved mental mechanisms, regulation/dysregulation of internal processes attachment and kinship in therapy, the importance of internalizing warmth as a therapeutic goal, kin selection and incest avoidance, co-operation and deception in social relations, difficulties in working with certain male clients, gender differences in therapy, and the roles of shame and guilt in treatment.


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Last Updated: 24 November 2007.