THE RELATIONAL TURN OF COGNITIVE PSYCHOTHERAPY: FOUNDATION AND DEVELOPMENTS OF EVOLUTIONIST COGNITIVE PSYCHOTHERAPY

This article describes the foundation and development of a cognitive psychotherapy approach called by Giovanni Liotti evolutionist cognitive psychotherapy because it is based on evolutionist psychology and epistemology. This approach emerges from the integration of attachment theory principles with cognitive behavioural therapy encouraging a relational turn. On one hand attachment theory provided a theory of normal and pathological development for cognitive psychotherapy. This favoured the discovery of the link between disorganized attachment and the psychopathological dimension characterized by failure of high integrative mental functions. On the other hand, evolutionist cognitive psychotherapy promoted the study of innate interpersonal motivations and their role in the regulation of therapeutic relationship. These two elements are integrated in the treatment of trauma related disorder for which evolutionist cognitive psychotherapy provided a significant contribution.

Key words: disorganized attachment, early relational trauma, evolutionist cognitive psychotherapy, innate interpersonal motivations

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