Humor in Gestalt & Psychotherapy: Two Article Reviews

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TWO JOURNAL ARTICLES - CRITIQUE The two journal articles which I critique have in common the construct of humor (spelled in both international journals as humour). I will examine humor in the first article as a construct. It is utilized as a tool, as a component of therapy but I will examine the very basic underlying nature of humor as a construct and as a phenomenon that can be appropriately and adequately utilized in a gestalt modality (particularly tied to existing gestalt therapy tools). In the second article I will examine the actual use of humor – the specific functioning of humor as a therapeutic tool or therapeutic mechanism within the psychoanalytical modality. In brief, in the first article I critique the use of humor as a…show more content…
She notes that humor is in fact experiential and process, and that sense “refers to the ability to feel or appreciate something; the ability to be aware comments to the fore," (Jacobs, 2009). Just a couple sentences following that the author states, "awareness, characterized by contact, sensing, excitement and gestalt formation is considered a primary therapeutic mechanism," (Yontef, 1989; cited by Jacobs). As the research design is articulated this is about as close as the author gets to delineating an operational definition that connects the awareness associated with sense of humor with the awareness which a gestalt therapist would associate with better deflection mechanisms and the ability to better handle boundary disturbances. My primary concern with the structure of this research lies with the very initial transition from the review of literature to the initial implementation of the research methodology and design, and with the somewhat inadequate operational definition of the construct of humor (as it relates to gestalt modality) and to a failure to more implicitly or directly connect humor and sense of awareness (whether through literature citations or methodology). If the author assumes to delineate a relationship between humor and the efficacy of gestalt therapy that incorporates humor, it is absolutely necessary for an adequate, appropriate definition and a very well delineated connection

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