You Know it When You Feel it: The Aesthetic Qualities of Empathic Expression


Provine, Yasna C.


The author presents a framework designed to assist the counselor in evaluatingtheaestheticqualitiesofempathicexpression. This framework is advanced by the supposition that empathic expression bears aesthetic qualities that are relatable, recognizable, and interpretive. Theaestheticqualitiesofunityandvariety,movement and stability, scale and proportion, and balance function as the design principles through which empathy can be expressed and experienced within the counseling dyad. This process o f humanistic counseling includes the conceptualization of empathy as an art entity and empathic expression as the preliminary techniques to initiate its aestheticdesign. Empathybecomesvivifiedwhenthecounselor and client together engage in its construction through a relational dialectic.