This issue contains the obituaries of two of the greats in our field, and it
is tempting to regard it as the end of an era. Hans Eysenck and Joseph Wolpe
were truly giants in the field, truly founding fathers of scientific
cognitive-behavioural therapy. Their passing is a landmark, but clearly
not the end of an era. The era that they ushered in was one in
which the basis of psychopathology and treatment lay in well defined theory
and rigorous, well conducted research. That philosophy has grown, developed,
and has given us a scientific basis for cognitive-behavioural therapy.
I believe that it is no coincidence that both men intended, at an early
age, to follow a career in the physical sciences. They had many other
characteristics in common, including a firmness of purpose that served both
them and the field well. Isaac Newton, writing to Robert Hooke, said of his
achievements that “If I have seen further it is by standing on
the shoulders of Giants”. Eysenck and Wolpe were such giants, and we should be grateful for their shoulders, and for the vision
that their achievements allow us.