A Rejoinder to Alan E. Kazdin

  • Lloyd H. Silverman
  • Eric Mendelsohn


The proposals that Kazdin offers for further investigating the effects of unconscious merging and sanction fantasies on treatment outcome are excellent. We fully agree that “considerably more research is needed… to make the case that [unconscious] fantasy activation accounts for therapeutic change in the usual practice of treatment.” We think that his first two recommendations in particular—for studies demonstrating “that such fantasies are activated in routine application of treatment” and for “measures of the processes that are activated”—are crucially needed, though these recommendations would not be easy to implement. However, we believe that implementation would be much more possible if we could secure the collaboration of behavior therapists. Thus, we would like to spell out one proposal for implementation in the hope that it might tempt some behavior therapists to join us in a collaborative effort.


Behavior Therapist Routine Application Projective Test Systematic Desensitization Dynamic Psychotherapy 
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  1. Silverman, L. H. The unconscious fantasy as therapeutic agent in psychoanalytic treatment. In S. Slipp (Ed.),Curative factors in dynamic psychotherapy. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1982.Google Scholar
  2. Wachtel, P., & Arkin, A. Projective test responses before and after behavioral therapy.Comprehensive Psychotherapy,1980,1, 1–12.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lloyd H. Silverman
    • 1
    • 2
  • Eric Mendelsohn
    • 3
  1. 1.New York Veterans Administration Regional OfficeNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyNew York UniversityNew YorkUSA
  3. 3.Westchester DivisionThe New York Hospital-Cornell Medical CenterWhite PlainsUSA

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