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Philosophy Practice: An Alternative to Counseling and Psychotherapy First Edition Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0275965419
ISBN-10: 0275965414
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"This book is an impressive explanation and justification of the growing
profession of philosophical practice. In it, Shlomit Schuster offers
philosophical practice as an alternative to psychological therapy.

Clear, erudite, and well argued, this work grants the reader a lucid
understanding of this new practice and its rationale. Philosophers, in
particular, will gain by discovering here a fresh employment of philosophy
that raises questions about their understanding of the enterprise in which
they engage." - Iyyun, The Jerusalem Philosophical Quarterly

"The challenging and questioning nature of the material makes it a very useful book,
not only for existential psychotherapists but for us all"  - Journal of the Society of Existential Analysis

"The narratives illustrate the spirits and intentions of philosophy practice
very well. The main impression is the gain of coherence, reconciliation
with those features of the self, the life history, or the situation with
which the individual has been cross, which is helped greatly by the
avoidance of "psychopathologization" of problems.

To sum up my impression of this book, there are useful intentions and
procedures outlined in philosophy practice, foremost among them putting the client's
problem into a wider frame of philosophical aporias."  - American Journal of Psychiatry

"Written in a warm, reflective style, it is both a
reasoned critique of standard psychotherapeutic methods and a convincing
exposition of philosophical practice. But beneath the lucid narrative
of the book you also glimpse profound scholarship and a sharp intellect." - The Canberra Times

"There is much to learn from this book." - Israel Journal of Psychiatry

?I found the case histories at the end of the book to be especially interesting, as they demonstrate ways in which philosophical issues can be woven into the daliy worries we all face....It will be of interest to therapists with a philosophical bent.?-American Journal of Psychotherapy

About the Author

Shlomit C. Schuster received a Ph.D. from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem on Philosophical Autobiography as a Comment on the Practice of Philosophy. She has been herself a philosophical practitioner in private practice since 1989.

The book Philosophy Practice: An Alternative to Counseling and Psychotherapy shows how her own practice reflect in theory and practical sessions the ideas of the 20th century founder of this field namely the work of Dr. Gerd B. Achenbach. It is so far the first and only monologue presenting this type of practice in an authentic manner.
For a list of appraisals of this classic book in the field of Philosophical Counseling see:
sites.google.com/site/thephilosophicalcounselingweb/reviews-philosophical-practice
To order it for new at the best price see:  abc-clio.com/product.aspx?id=2147498636
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Praeger; First Edition edition (August 30, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0275965414
  • ISBN-13: 978-0275965419
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.8 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,837,669 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
Review: Shlomit Schuster; Philosophy Practice: An Alternative to Counseling and Psychotherapy
Modern philosophical counseling started in the beginning of the 1980's when Gerd Achenbach opened his practice in Cologne, Germany. Since then philosophical counseling has spread all over the world and there are approximately over two hundred philosophical counselors giving philosophical advice and discussing various philosophical issues with clients. While the media has paid attention to this quite new phenomena many academic philosophers and other professionals in counseling are not so enthusiastic about this new form of philosophy. Shlomit Schuster's book Philosophy Practice: An Alternative to Counseling and Psychotherapy is a long awaited English introduction to philosophical counseling and the practice of understanding life in all its richness with the aid of philosophy. Schuster's book is not the only one published recently on the topic but unlike its competitor, Lou Marinoff's Plato not Prozac, it is not only directed at potential clients but to a critical and philosophically educated public as well. The book starts with tearing down a common presupposition about philosophical counseling on a topic which is scrutinized throughout the book namely the prejudice that philosophical counseling is a hybrid of philosophy and psychology or psychotherapy. "Many people who think, speak, and write about philosophical practitioners refer to them as though they were therapists in the usual sense of the term", Schuster writes and devotes the first chapter of this book to oppose that particular idea.
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Format: Hardcover
Dr. Schuster provides the world with an impressive explanation and justification of the original philosophical counseling method. Other books that use the concept "philosophical counseling," hardly describe or understand the deep issues found in the work of the main originator of this new field of practice, Dr. Gerd Achenbach. In a clear, erudite, and well argued manner Dr. Schuster addresses the relevant theoretical and practical issues. Besides the short practice examples, there are case histories showing how effective Achenbach's method is for the resolving of problems people usually discuss with psychologists, psychiatrists and other care givers.

The method used in this book is the foundation stone to the whole philosophical practice movement; this book is unique in its vivid clarification of these basics. The challenging and questioning nature of the material makes it a very useful book, for lay persons and professionals alike.

Philosophy Practice: An Alternative to Counseling and Psychotherapy has been translated and published in several languages, as have been several other texts from this great female author. This exciting book is highly recommended to all who like to think about their own and other peoples' problems from a philosophical and dialogical perspective.
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Format: Hardcover
Schuster's stated aim in this work is to provide a report on practicing philosophy in counseling sessions with individuals, and to interest a public unschooled in philosophy, as well as philosophers and scholars from other disciplines. (pp.3-4)

In the first chapter, Schuster gives the reader a brief preview of his topics in subsequent chapters. He also discusses the similarities and differences between philosophical counseling and other therapeutic practices like psychotherapy and medicine. Unlike therapy or medicine, philosophy practice does not view the person as a "patient" who is ill and in need of cure- or even as a patient at all, for that matter. Rather, the person coming in for consultation is viewed as a fellow philosopher, and counseling sessions are "only an invitation to philosophize, and this for its own sake..." (23). Beneficial changes are welcome of course, but they are not the goal per se of philosophical counseling. Rather, on Schuster's view the goal of philosophical counseling is to help the individual better understand the problem he or she is facing.

Judging by the title of the second chapter -i.e., "Classical Instances of Philosophy as Practice," Schuster was supposed to set out a somewhat brief history of philosophical counseling. Oddly enough, only the first eight or so pages are concerned with the history of philosophy as a practice. The balance of this 41-page chapter deals with the views of several living European philosophical counselors.
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Format: Hardcover
i love this book and i do not understand why this book was not written before.
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