Sociopolitical and psychohistorical factors in acknowledging the effectiveness of EMDR
EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) has been mired in intense controversy since its inception. Initial claims of its efficacy were probably exaggerated, but many researchers continue to outright dismiss its positive outcome data. Indeed, the ongoing debate over the effectiveness of EMDR recapitulates the developmental history of validating many psychotherapy systems. This presentation reviews sociopolitical considerations in interpreting and acknowledging the outcome research on EMDR. These considerations include paradigm strain, early restrictions on EMDR training, the timing of controlled research vis a vis clinical applications, initial failure to place EMDR into existing theories, its application to disorders beyond trauma, and the use of ?eye movements? in its title. Dispassionate reviews generally find the clinical results of EMDR with PTSD to be equivalent to exposure methods in fewer sessions, but the research community has failed to embrace these conclusions. Needed are critical openness to new psychotherapies, familiarity with the published data, and a responsibility to evaluate the effectiveness of any therapeutic innovation.
Original Work Citation
Norcross, J. (2003, August). Sociopolitical and psychohistorical factors in acknowledging the effectiveness of EMDR. Presentation at the 111th American Psychological Association Annual Convention, Toronto, ON
“Sociopolitical and psychohistorical factors in acknowledging the effectiveness of EMDR,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed October 21, 2020, https://emdria.omeka.net/items/show/18689.