The Istituto di Gestalt H.C.C..


Gestalt Therapy

Hermeneutics and Clinical

Edited by Margherita Spagnuolo Lobb 

( with writings of Giovanni Salonia, Antonio Sichera, Pietro Andrea Cavaleri, Valeria Conte and Paola Argentino )


FOREWORD  TO THE ITALIAN EDITION ( Milano, Franco Angeli editore, 2000 )

Can  clinical models elaborated decades ago, in entirely different historical and social conditions, still meet the needs of a world which has been completely transformed?


The aim of this book is to explore Gestalt psychotherapy, fifty years after its creation,by asking the questions  that belong to the cultural and clinical horizon of our time.The problems discussed here have come to light during  the periods of research carried out by the training staff working in the Istituto di Gestalt-Human Communication Center, since 1979. We have conducted a critical examination of  the tradition  we work in ( and which moulded us) in search of a  treatment model for seriously disturbed patients that aims at achieving personality integration rather than mere social training.

What is the therapeutic value of letting oneself be absorbed in the transient truth of the here and now with a borderline or psychotic patient?

What relationship needs determine the behaviour, at times so dramatic, of adolescents today?

How can a "fragmented" society face the challenge of the integration of the "other",  the dialogue between differences? How can our society's dominant myth of self-fulfilment  be made compatible with the possibilty of maintaining satisfying long term relationships ?


The opening essay defines the original contribution that this approach has made, and continues to make, to  the world of psychotherapy. It examines a relationship that is neither intrapsychic, nor interpersonal nor systemic, but is centred on the experience of the "between", that is, that experiental space that is to be found  between the 'I' and the 'you', between internal experience and the influence of the environment.

Coherent with phenomenological thought, of which it constitutes the most original clinical application, Gestalt  therapy states that we cannot know "reality" in itself, but only that part of it that is experienced in the here and now, in other words, in the experience of contact and withdrawal of a "human animal organism" with its environment.

Contact constitutes the hermeneutical cypher, and gives an  individual identity and autogenous depth to this type of psychotherapy.

Gestaltic epistemology considers contact to be  a boundary event in continuous evolution,  observed by the Gestalt therapist  as a process .His principal concern is not to identify  meanings but observe the evolution of relational deliberateness.The creation of the relationship is the place in which the truth of the 'I' and the 'you' generates a new truth, a momentary configuration of harmony that immediately leaves space for other figures.

It is the Zwischenheit,what Buber calls "betweeness",what is between the 'I' and the 'you', and, for Gestalt psychotherapy, this is what orients human behaviour.   

>>>To continue


Home -|- Gestalt Therapy -|- Trainings -|- Our History -|- E.A.G.T. -|- G.T. in the World