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Arnold Lazarus

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Arnold Allan Lazarus (born 1932) is a South African psychologist who is known for his contributions to behavior therapy.

Concurrently with the pioneering contributions of Albert Ellis and Aaron Beck, starting in the late 1950s and continuing through the 1970s, Lazarus developed what was arguably the first form of "broad-spectrum" cognitive behavioral therapy. Indeed, in 1958, Arnold Lazarus was the first person to introduce the terms "behavior therapy" and "behavior therapist" into the professional literature (i.e., Lazarus, A. A. "New methods in psychotherapy: a case study". South African Medical Journal, 1958, 32, 660-664).[How to reference and link to summary or text] He later broadened the focus of behavioral treatment to incorporate cognitive aspects (e.g., see Arnold Lazarus' 1971 landmark book Behavior Therapy and Beyond, perhaps the first clinical text on CBT). When it became clear that optimizing therapy's effectiveness and effecting durable treatment outcomes often required transcending more narrowly focused cognitive and behavioral methods, Arnold Lazarus expanded the scope of CBT to include physical sensations (as distinct from emotional states), visual images (as distinct from language-based thinking), interpersonal relationships, and biological factors. The final product of Arnold Lazarus' approach to psychotherapy is called multimodal therapy and shares many of its assumptions and theorizing with Ellis' rational emotive behavior therapy.


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