Psychoanalysis and CBT: From Rivalry to Hospitality in Psychotherapy Integration

Yael Peri Herzovich, Aner Govrin

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3 Scopus citations


Despite the many efforts to integrate psychoanalysis with CBT, many loyal therapists of each school have consistently refused to ‘open their gate’ to the other's influence. We explain this resistance as a way to preserve a strong professional identity through the Us–Them distinction. Any attempt to encourage loyal therapists to be influenced by the other school must guarantee that the other will not threaten their identity. We use Derrida's notion of hospitality to facilitate mutual influence between the schools while overcoming the other's threatening encounter. According to Derrida, hospitality, in response to the law of ethics, opens the home's threshold to the foreigner; in this law, the other is always welcome. At the same time, hospitality prevents a hostile takeover – by the law of politics, which ensures the owner's ongoing control over his house. By thus keeping the tension between openness and control over who enters, hospitality makes listening and learning between the psychotherapeutic schools possible. We discuss practical ways to put the concept of hospitality to work between the two schools, offer illustrations, and argue for this model's advantages.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)244-262
Number of pages19
JournalBritish Journal of Psychotherapy
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 2021

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© 2021 BPF and John Wiley & Sons Ltd


  • CBT


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