Critical Priorities for the Psychotherapy and Counselling Community

  • Colin Feltham


I have promoted the idea of thinking critically about the psychological therapies (and more broadly about human distress and the human condition) for many years, initially in Dryden and Feltham (1992). Feltham (1999)attempted to categorise critiques, and most recently my Critical Thinking in Counselling and Psychotherapy (2010) and Counselling and Counselling Psychology: A Critical Examination (2013) have continued this critical trajectory. Since the origins of the British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy (BACP) in 1970 we have seen many enthusiasms in the form of new schools of therapy; a great deal of professionalising in the form of ethics documents, training and supervision norms, accreditation procedures and statutory regulation; and a push for research activity and its dissemination in conferences and journals. But the field still suffers, in my view, from wholly insufficient critical thinking. In this chapter, I want to explore (1) the place of thinking and theorising in counselling; (2) the neglect of and suspicions about such thinking; (3) areas in which critical thinking might suggest some priorities for our profession and beyond; and (4) some reflective afterthoughts on the sources and limits of my own thinking.


Critical Thinking Critical Literature Counselling Psychology Psychological Therapy Psychotherapy Training 
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© Colin Feltham 2015

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  • Colin Feltham

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