Book Chapters

Book Chapter

Ruella Frank
“Self in Motion”

Self A Polyphony of Contemporary Gestalt Therapists

Published in:
Jean-Marie Robine, (ed.)
A Polyphony of Contemporary Gestalt Therapists.

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Featuring; Ruella Frank, Frank M. Staemmler, Gianni Francesetti, Jean-Marie Robine, M. Spagnuolo Lobb, Michael V. Miller, Philip Brownell, Carmen Vazquez Bandin, Claudia Baptista Tavora, Dan Bloom, Erving Polster, Georges Wollants, Kenneth Meyer, Lynne Jacobs, Mônica Alvim Botelho, Peter Philippson, Gilles Delisle & Line Girard

Sixty-five years after the creation of gestalt therapy, it seemed useful and interesting to question gestalt therapy theorists on their understanding and use of this concept of ‘self’, and to invite them to deploy it and clarify the directions in which they may have been able to influence and enrich it.

The authors of these chapters are the major theorists of gestalt therapy today. Every one has been able to take a refreshing look at this foundational concept. The variety of gateways they chose, the sources to which they return, such as psychoanalysis or pragmatism, to open up new perspectives, the broadening of their scope by bringing in approaches from neighboring disciplines (such as phenomenology, object relations theory, neurosciences, spirituality, aesthetics…) get us closer to the spirit of our founders, who hoped that each of us would appropriate their proposals, far from any idea of orthodoxy or a single-minded approach.

Book Chapter

Ruella Frank
“Embodying Creativity, Developing Experience:
The Therapy Process and Its Developmental Foundation”

Creative License: The Art of Gestalt Therapy Book Cover

Published in:
Margherita Spagnuolo-Lobb,
Nancy Amendt-Lyon, (eds.)
Creative License: The Art of Gestalt Therapy.
Wien/New York.
Springer-Verlag, 2004

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It is the intention of human organisms to seek relationship within their environment. Through this dynamic interaction, the organism changes and grows “. . . assimilating from the environment what it needs for its very growth” (PHG, 1951, p. viii). And how the organism incorporates what is vital to its developing is through the creativity of adjusting or the spontaneous interacting of one with another to create something different and new.

Any adjusting is creative insofar as it leads to integration: the unification of two unlike essences that are now made into a more inclusive whole. This is the experience of contacting; the quality of connecting with oneself and within the environment.

Book Chapter

Ruella Frank
“Developmental Somatic Psychotherapy: Developmental Process Embodied Within The Clinical Moment”

New Dimensions in Body Psychotherapy book cover

Published in:
Totton, Nick, (ed.), (2005)
New Dimensions in Body Psychotherapy.
Open University Press/McGraw Hill Education

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As one of the contributing authors to New Dimensions in Body Psychotherapy, I am pleased to be part of a project that brings together diverse and novel explorations within the field of psychotherapy. A pre-requisite for any work to be labeled a new dimension is that new parts have been integrated into what is already known in such a way as to create a different and unique whole.

This is certainly true of Developmental Somatic Psychotherapy. Inspired by the work of somatic/developmental practitioners and theorists, this new dimension is a relational and movement-oriented approach to psychotherapy within a Gestalt therapy framework. In pulling together these dynamic strands, a template for understanding and working with early psycho-physical blocks as they arise within the here-and-now of the adult therapy session has emerged.

The First Year book cover

The First Year and the Rest of Your Life Movement, Development, and Psychotherapeutic Change

Ruella Frank and Frances La Barre

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The movement repertoire that develops in the first year of life is a language in itself and conveys desires, intentions and emotions. This early life in motion serves as the roots of… read more

“I believe this to be the most fruitful use of infant research that I have ever seen, and am honored to help to introduce its verbal expression.”

— Donna Orange, Ph.D., Supervising Analyst, Institute for the Psychoanalytic Study of Subjectivity, NYC, author of Thinking for Clinicians, co-author (with R. Stolorow) of Worlds Of Experience, co-author (with G. Atwood and R. Stolorow) of Working Intersubjectively

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Body of Awareness Book Cover

Body of Awareness:
A Somatic and Developmental Approach to Psychotherapy

A foundation text for understanding the relationship between early infant movement and adult psychotherapy. More…

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“Dr. Frank, in this pathbreaking study, makes a compelling case for the critical role of ‘body sense’ in developing self awareness from the earliest days of infancy, and in maintaining a healthy mind-body equilibrium throughout life. She provides sensitive and exquisite case studies and shows a deep understanding of movement, development and therapeutic change. This book will find a wide and receptive audience.”

— Esther Thelen, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Psychology, Indiana University;
Author of A Dynamic Systems Approach to Development

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