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Humanities, Volume 4, Issue 4 (December 2015) , Pages 500-992

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Open AccessArticle
Humanities for the Environment—A Manifesto for Research and Action
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 977-992; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040977
Received: 22 October 2015 / Revised: 12 December 2015 / Accepted: 13 December 2015 / Published: 21 December 2015
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 4808 | PDF Full-text (227 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Human preferences, practices and actions are the main drivers of global environmental change in the 21st century. It is crucial, therefore, to promote pro-environmental behavior. In order to accomplish this, we need to move beyond rational choice and behavioral decision theories, which do [...] Read more.
Human preferences, practices and actions are the main drivers of global environmental change in the 21st century. It is crucial, therefore, to promote pro-environmental behavior. In order to accomplish this, we need to move beyond rational choice and behavioral decision theories, which do not capture the full range of commitments, assumptions, imaginaries, and belief systems that drive those preferences and actions. Humanities disciplines, such as philosophy, history, religious studies, gender studies, language and literary studies, psychology, and pedagogics do offer deep insights into human motivations, values, and choices. We believe that the expertise of such fields for transforming human preferences, practices and actions is ignored at society’s peril. We propose an agenda that focuses global humanities research on stepping up to the challenges of planetary environmental change. We have established Environmental Humanities Observatories through which to observe, explore and enact the crucial ways humanistic disciplines may help us understand and engage with global ecological problems by providing insight into human action, perceptions, and motivation. We present this Manifesto as an invitation for others to join the “Humanities for the Environment” open global consortium of humanities observatories as we continue to develop a shared research agenda. Full article
Open AccessArticle
A Critical Hermeneutic Analysis of Presence in Nursing Practice
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 958-976; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040958
Received: 22 September 2015 / Revised: 12 November 2015 / Accepted: 15 November 2015 / Published: 9 December 2015
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Abstract
Nursing presence, although it involves action at times, is a humanitarian quality of relating to a patient that is known to have powerful and positive implications for both nurse and patient. However, this phenomenon has not been well understood. Three theories, drawn from [...] Read more.
Nursing presence, although it involves action at times, is a humanitarian quality of relating to a patient that is known to have powerful and positive implications for both nurse and patient. However, this phenomenon has not been well understood. Three theories, drawn from the work of Paul Ricoeur and Hans-Georg Gadamer, served as the boundaries for both data collection and analysis. The theories were narrative identity, play and solicitude. This study follows a critical hermeneutic approach to field research and data analysis. Literature regarding nursing presence is reviewed and discussed, and in-depth conversations with eleven participants are recorded. Examining the phenomenon of nursing presence through the hermeneutic lenses of narrative identity, play and solicitude has elucidated the role of ethical orientation, creativity and connection with the human experience through exploration of self and other. This more nuanced and complex understanding adds depth to the conversation and offers new possibilities to the effort to encourage and support presence in nursing practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Humanities in Health Professions Education and Practice)
Open AccessArticle
“No More Boomerang”: Environment and Technology in Contemporary Aboriginal Australian Poetry
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 938-957; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040938
Received: 1 November 2015 / Revised: 6 December 2015 / Accepted: 7 December 2015 / Published: 9 December 2015
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Abstract
Based in oral traditions and song cycles, contemporary Aboriginal Australian poetry is full of allusions to the environment. Not merely a physical backdrop for human activities, the ancient Aboriginal landscape is a nexus of ecological, spiritual, material, and more-than-human overlays—and one which is [...] Read more.
Based in oral traditions and song cycles, contemporary Aboriginal Australian poetry is full of allusions to the environment. Not merely a physical backdrop for human activities, the ancient Aboriginal landscape is a nexus of ecological, spiritual, material, and more-than-human overlays—and one which is increasingly compromised by modern technological impositions. In literary studies, while Aboriginal poetry has become the subject of critical interest, few studies have foregrounded the interconnections between environment and technology. Instead, scholarship tends to focus on the socio-political and cultural dimensions of the writing. How have contemporary Australian Aboriginal poets responded to the impacts of environmental change and degradation? How have poets addressed the effects of modern technology in ancestral environments, or country? This article will develop an ecocritical and technology-focused perspective on contemporary Aboriginal poetry through an analysis of the writings of three significant literary-activists: Jack Davis (1917–2000), Oodgeroo Noonuccal (1920–1993), and Lionel Fogarty (born 1958). Davis, Noonuccal, and Fogarty strive poetically to draw critical attention to the particular impacts of late modernist technologies on Aboriginal people and country. In developing a critique of invasive technologies that adversely affect the environment and culture, their poetry also invokes the Aboriginal technologies that sustained (and, in places, still sustain) people in reciprocal relation to country. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Global Indigeneities and the Environment) Printed Edition available
Open AccessArticle
Wittgenstein, Marx, and Marxism: Some Historical Connections
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 924-937; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040924
Received: 19 November 2015 / Revised: 30 November 2015 / Accepted: 1 December 2015 / Published: 4 December 2015
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1672 | PDF Full-text (211 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The present article aims at highlighting the connections that can be drawn between Wittgenstein and Marx(ism) from a historical point of view, through developing a synoptic account of the available relevant historical and biographical data. Starting with a discussion of Wittgenstein’s relation to [...] Read more.
The present article aims at highlighting the connections that can be drawn between Wittgenstein and Marx(ism) from a historical point of view, through developing a synoptic account of the available relevant historical and biographical data. Starting with a discussion of Wittgenstein’s relation to the Italian Marxist economist Piero Sraffa, it then moves to a presentation of Wittgenstein’s broader circle of Marxist friends. Our account continues and concludes by examining and comparing Wittgenstein’s stance towards the Two World Wars and Stalin’s U.S.S.R. The approach developed in this article not only challenges the widespread image of Wittgenstein as a philosopher indifferent to issues of a political nature. It also traces Marxism as a significant aspect of the context in which Wittgenstein’s philosophy, and particularly its later phase, was developed. Full article
Open AccessMeeting Report
Decolonizing Trauma Studies Round-Table Discussion
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 905-923; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040905
Received: 18 September 2015 / Revised: 17 November 2015 / Accepted: 19 November 2015 / Published: 30 November 2015
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2204 | PDF Full-text (206 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This round-table, which featured literary critics Professor Stef Craps, Professor Bryan Cheyette and Dr. Alan Gibbs, was recorded as part of the “Decolonizing Trauma Studies” symposium organized by Dr. Sonya Andermahr and Dr. Larissa Allwork at The School of The Arts, The University [...] Read more.
This round-table, which featured literary critics Professor Stef Craps, Professor Bryan Cheyette and Dr. Alan Gibbs, was recorded as part of the “Decolonizing Trauma Studies” symposium organized by Dr. Sonya Andermahr and Dr. Larissa Allwork at The School of The Arts, The University of Northampton (15 May 2015). Convened a week after the University of Zaragoza’s “Memory Frictions” conference, where Cheyette, Gibbs, Andermahr and Allwork gave papers, the Northampton symposium and round-table was sponsored by The School of The Arts to coincide with Andermahr’s guest editorship of this special issue of Humanities. Craps, Cheyette and Gibbs addressed five questions during the round-table. Namely, does trauma studies suffer from a form of psychological universalism? Do you see any signs that trauma studies is becoming more decolonized? What are the challenges of a decolonized trauma studies for disciplinary thinking? How does a decolonized trauma studies relate to pedagogical ethics? Finally, where do you see the future of the field? While this edited transcript retains a certain informality of style, it offers a significant contribution to knowledge by capturing a unique exchange between three key thinkers in contemporary trauma studies, providing a timely analysis of the impact of postcolonial theory on trauma studies, the state of the field and its future possibilities. Issues addressed include the problematic scholarly tendency to universalize a western model of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD); the question of the centrality of the Holocaust in trauma studies and the implications of this for the study of atrocities globally; the vexed issues posed by the representation of perpetrators; as well as how the basic tenets of western cultural trauma theory, until recently so often characterized by a Caruth-inspired focus on belatedness and afterwardness, are being rethought, both in response to developments in the US and in answer to the challenge to ‘decolonize’ trauma studies. Full article
Open AccessArticle
The Ubiquity of Humanity and Textuality in Human Experience
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 885-904; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040885
Received: 16 June 2015 / Revised: 17 November 2015 / Accepted: 19 November 2015 / Published: 27 November 2015
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Abstract
The so-called “crisis of the humanities” can be understood in terms of an asymmetry between the natural and social sciences on the one hand and the humanities on the other. While the sciences approach topics related to human experience in quantificational or experimental [...] Read more.
The so-called “crisis of the humanities” can be understood in terms of an asymmetry between the natural and social sciences on the one hand and the humanities on the other. While the sciences approach topics related to human experience in quantificational or experimental terms, the humanities turn to ancient, canonical, and other texts in the search for truths about human experience. As each approach has its own unique limitations, it is desirable to overcome or remove the asymmetry between them. The present article seeks to do just that by advancing and defending the following two claims: (a) that humanity is ubiquitous wherever language is used; and (b) that anything that can be experienced by humans is in need of an interpretation. Two arguments are presented in support of these claims. The first argument concerns the nature of questions, which are one of the fundamental marks or manifestations of human language. All questions are ultimately attempts to find meanings or interpretations of what is presented. As such, in questioning phenomena, one seeks to transcend the negative space or oppression of imposed structures; in doing so, one reveals one’s humanity. Second, all phenomena are textual in nature: that which astrophysicists find in distant galaxies or which cognitive neuroscientists find in the structures of the human brain are no less in need of interpretation than the dialogues of Plato or the poems of Homer. Texts are ubiquitous. The implications of these two arguments are identified and discussed in this article. In particular, it is argued that the ubiquity of humanity and textuality points to a view of human nature that is neither individualistic nor collectivist but rather integrational in suggesting that the realization of oneself is inseparable from the realization of others. Full article
Open AccessArticle
“Oh, this is What It Feels Like”: A Role for the Body in Learning an Evidence-Based Practice
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 861-884; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040861
Received: 23 September 2015 / Revised: 19 November 2015 / Accepted: 19 November 2015 / Published: 27 November 2015
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Abstract
This paper will present research that explored the experiences of couple and family therapists learning about and using an evidence-based practice (EBP). Using a phenomenological approach called Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis, three themes emerged from the participants’ experiences: the supports and challenges while learning [...] Read more.
This paper will present research that explored the experiences of couple and family therapists learning about and using an evidence-based practice (EBP). Using a phenomenological approach called Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis, three themes emerged from the participants’ experiences: the supports and challenges while learning an EBP, the experience of shame while learning, and the embodiment of a therapy practice. This paper will focus on the theme of embodiment. Research participants’ experiences will be reviewed and further explored using Merleau-Ponty’s notion of embodiment and Gendlin’s (1978) more internally focused understanding of how awareness of a felt sense is experienced as a move “inside of a person”. As researchers, educators, administrators, policy makers, and counsellors struggle with what works best with which populations and when, how best to allocate resources, how best to educate and support counsellors, and the complexity of doing research in real-life settings, this research has the potential to contribute to those varied dialogues. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Humanities in Health Professions Education and Practice)
Open AccessArticle
Postcolonial Trauma Theory in the Contact Zone: The Strategic Representation of Grief in Edwidge Danticat’s Claire of the Sea Light
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 834-860; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040834
Received: 4 September 2015 / Revised: 10 November 2015 / Accepted: 13 November 2015 / Published: 20 November 2015
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Abstract
This article starts by engaging in a dialogue with the most relevant postcolonial emendations to trauma theory, addressed to both its aporetic and its therapeutic trends, and it goes on to reflect on the state of the decolonizing trauma theory project, critically examining [...] Read more.
This article starts by engaging in a dialogue with the most relevant postcolonial emendations to trauma theory, addressed to both its aporetic and its therapeutic trends, and it goes on to reflect on the state of the decolonizing trauma theory project, critically examining the motivations behind it as well as some of the problems it still encounters, like the risk of objectification and revictimization of postcolonial peoples, the blurring of their trauma particularities, and the appropriation of their experience. Then, it proposes an alternative understanding of postcolonial trauma theory as a contact zone where trauma criticism and the postcolony are interrelated and mutually transformed, and where unequal power relations are also attended to. Acknowledging the postcolony as a site of theory production rather than the object of external definition, it proceeds to analyze Edwidge Danticat’s short story cycle Claire of the Sea Light: its strategic representation of grief—which she achieves through the short story cycle structure and overall in-betweenness and ambivalence in symbols and characterization—puts Haitians on the critical map of trauma, fighting invisibility and oblivion, but it simultaneously resists an appropriation of Haitian experience by rejecting any monolithic view on Haiti and refusing to fit into a predetermined template. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Manilaner’s Holocaust Meets Manileños’ Colonisation: Cross-Traumatic Affiliations and Postcolonial Considerations in Trauma Studies
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 818-833; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040818
Received: 24 August 2015 / Accepted: 13 November 2015 / Published: 19 November 2015
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Abstract
After interrogating the (non-)referential status of the Holocaust for Asians, this essay examines Frank Ephraim’s Escape to Manila and Juergen Goldhagen’s Manila Memories. In particular, cross-traumatic affiliation is studied between two groups of people: the Manilaner and the Manileños: the former were Europeans [...] Read more.
After interrogating the (non-)referential status of the Holocaust for Asians, this essay examines Frank Ephraim’s Escape to Manila and Juergen Goldhagen’s Manila Memories. In particular, cross-traumatic affiliation is studied between two groups of people: the Manilaner and the Manileños: the former were Europeans who fled Nazism and sought refuge in Manila; the latter were Filipino residents of Manila who, during the Second World War, found themselves under Japanese Occupation. A closer reading of the memoirs, however, also reveals latent orientalism in the portrayal of Filipinos. This essay thus echoes present postcolonial concerns in recent Trauma Studies research which ask the place of serial colonisations, martial law, climate catastrophes and the sacred in Trauma theory. Full article
Open AccessArticle
“A Lock of Thy Bright Hair”: The Enlightenment’s Milton and Our Auratic Material
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 797-817; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040797
Received: 16 September 2015 / Accepted: 4 November 2015 / Published: 11 November 2015
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Abstract
This article looks at how English critics, biographers, and poets once sported with the image, idea, and biomaterial of John Milton’s hair. Their play is contextualized within the materialist and instrumental values that were instituted in eighteenth-century literary criticism and biography and that [...] Read more.
This article looks at how English critics, biographers, and poets once sported with the image, idea, and biomaterial of John Milton’s hair. Their play is contextualized within the materialist and instrumental values that were instituted in eighteenth-century literary criticism and biography and that remain central to the humanities today. It was the philologists, antiquarians, bibliophiles, biographers, and anecdotalists of the long eighteenth century who linked the value of cultural objects to their work in the cultural world. The objects sheltered from that world—aesthetic ones in the modern sense—were meanwhile endowed with qualities purloined from an otherwise debunked supernatural register. These contradictory values, all object-centered, cultivated skepticism in observers and thus scripted still-privileged affective postures of mourning and melancholia with respect to objects of inquiry. Dynamic entanglement with Milton’s hair in eighteenth-century critical writing tells a different story. It teaches us to approach that writing as writing and to value “Milton’s hair” as auratic in the communicative sense later displaced by diffident, object-centered models of the aura. Can we define and engage our “material” along the lines of eighteenth-century “entanglement” with Milton’s hair? Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Humanities in a Utilitarian Age)
Open AccessReview
Western Scientific Approaches to Near-Death Experiences
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 775-796; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040775
Received: 12 October 2015 / Revised: 31 October 2015 / Accepted: 4 November 2015 / Published: 9 November 2015
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2978 | PDF Full-text (237 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Near-death experiences (NDEs) are vivid experiences that often occur in life-threatening conditions, usually characterized by a transcendent tone and clear perceptions of leaving the body and being in a different spatiotemporal dimension. Such experiences have been reported throughout history in diverse cultures, and [...] Read more.
Near-death experiences (NDEs) are vivid experiences that often occur in life-threatening conditions, usually characterized by a transcendent tone and clear perceptions of leaving the body and being in a different spatiotemporal dimension. Such experiences have been reported throughout history in diverse cultures, and are reported today by 10% to 20% of people who have come close to death. Although cultural expectations and parameters of the brush with death influence the content of some NDEs, near-death phenomenology is invariant across cultures. That invariance may reflect universal psychological defenses, neurophysiological processes, or actual experience of a transcendent or mystical domain. Research into these alternative explanations has been hampered by the unpredictable occurrence of NDEs. Regardless of the causes or interpretations of NDEs, however, they are consistently associated with profound and long-lasting aftereffects on experiencers, and may have important implications for non-experiencers as well. Full article
Open AccessArticle
The Deep Mapping of Pennine Street: A Cartographic Fiction
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 760-774; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040760
Received: 29 July 2015 / Revised: 25 October 2015 / Accepted: 27 October 2015 / Published: 6 November 2015
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Abstract
Pennine Street is a cartographic art experiment, twinning High Street 2012 in London with the Pennine Way, a long-distance footpath running between the Peak District and the Scottish Borders. Pennine Street was initially prompted by the London 2012 Olympic spectacle; more specifically, by [...] Read more.
Pennine Street is a cartographic art experiment, twinning High Street 2012 in London with the Pennine Way, a long-distance footpath running between the Peak District and the Scottish Borders. Pennine Street was initially prompted by the London 2012 Olympic spectacle; more specifically, by the militarization of the Games through the proposed deployment of surface-to-air missiles at sites in London. The project initially took the form of three organized walks along the route of High Street 2012, from Aldgate to Stratford. Readings were made while walking on each occasion, and both photographic and textual collages emerged out of the initial walks. The project engages the idea of trespass as a political action, as both potent and futile, and traces the development of modes of photographic and textual “trespass”, or transgression. Textual collage is employed to investigate the possibility of articulating Pennine Street as a “space-between” the empirical and the imagined. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Deep Mapping) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessArticle
The Meaning of Visual Thinking Strategies for Nursing Students
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 748-759; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040748
Received: 14 July 2015 / Revised: 14 July 2015 / Accepted: 22 October 2015 / Published: 30 October 2015
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Abstract
Nurse educators are called upon to provide innovative experiences for students to prepare them to work in complex healthcare settings. As part of this preparation, developing observational and communication skills is critical for nurses and can directly affect patient outcomes. Visual thinking strategies [...] Read more.
Nurse educators are called upon to provide innovative experiences for students to prepare them to work in complex healthcare settings. As part of this preparation, developing observational and communication skills is critical for nurses and can directly affect patient outcomes. Visual thinking strategies (VTS) is a teaching method that has been studied in primary education to develop communication and observational skills. VTS has potential to improve these same skills in nursing yet only one study has been done including nursing students and none have researched what meaning VTS has for them. This research study sought to answer the following questions: What meaning does VTS have for nursing students? How do nursing students use it in caring for patients? Students at a large Midwestern university in a Bachelor of Science program were recruited for participation. Students who voluntarily participated in a previous VTS experience were invited to participate in a second one, followed by an interview. Interpretive phenomenology was used to analyze the interviews and the following themes were identified: Feeling safe in learning and seeing and thinking differently. A literature review was performed to further expand these themes. Analysis of the findings and implications for future research are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Humanities in Health Professions Education and Practice)
Open AccessArticle
Student Snapshots: An Alternative Approach to the Visual History of American Indian Boarding Schools
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 726-747; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040726
Received: 11 August 2015 / Revised: 8 October 2015 / Accepted: 14 October 2015 / Published: 26 October 2015
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Abstract
Photographs of American Indian boarding school students have often been usedto illustrate the federal forced assimilation practices of the 1870s–1930s. Taken by officialschool photographers, these propagandistic images were produced to emphasize the“civilizing” benefits of the boarding school system. Although some Native studentsobtained cameras [...] Read more.
Photographs of American Indian boarding school students have often been usedto illustrate the federal forced assimilation practices of the 1870s–1930s. Taken by officialschool photographers, these propagandistic images were produced to emphasize the“civilizing” benefits of the boarding school system. Although some Native studentsobtained cameras and recorded their own boarding school experiences, the visual historystill relies on the institutionally-produced images. Using a collection of photographscreated by Parker McKenzie (Kiowa) and his classmates while attending Rainy Mountainand Phoenix Indian Schools, this paper intends to rectify that exclusion through a readingof these snapshots as examples of visual sovereignty. The concept of visual sovereigntyinvolves examining Native self-representations as the (re)claiming of indigenous identitiesin order to counter colonial imagery that has dominated the archives. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Oranges and Sunshine: The Story of a Traumatic Encounter
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 714-725; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040714
Received: 31 July 2015 / Revised: 11 October 2015 / Accepted: 13 October 2015 / Published: 20 October 2015
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Abstract
This paper will rely on some well-known theories on trauma, memory and ethics to study how Jim Loach’s debut film Oranges and Sunshine (2010) testifies to the traumatic deportation of up to 150,000 British children to distant parts of the Empire, mainly Australia, [...] Read more.
This paper will rely on some well-known theories on trauma, memory and ethics to study how Jim Loach’s debut film Oranges and Sunshine (2010) testifies to the traumatic deportation of up to 150,000 British children to distant parts of the Empire, mainly Australia, until 1970. Oranges and Sunshine was based on Margaret Humphreys’ moving memoir, originally entitled Empty Cradles (1994) but later re-titled Oranges and Sunshine after Loach’s film. What these two texts basically claim is the need to recover historic memory through heart-breaking acts of remembrance, which can alone denounce the atrocities that were concomitant with the colonial enterprise and pave the way for disclosing and working through individual and collective traumas. Full article
Open AccessConcept Paper
Violent Deaths and Traumatic Bereavement: The Importance of Appropriate Death Notification
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 702-713; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040702
Received: 15 April 2015 / Revised: 9 October 2015 / Accepted: 13 October 2015 / Published: 20 October 2015
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1969 | PDF Full-text (203 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The communication of a death due to unexpected and traumatic causes is considered a very sensitive issue that can deeply affect both operators responsible for reporting the incident and the mourning process of family members, relatives, and other survivors. By focusing particularly on [...] Read more.
The communication of a death due to unexpected and traumatic causes is considered a very sensitive issue that can deeply affect both operators responsible for reporting the incident and the mourning process of family members, relatives, and other survivors. By focusing particularly on cases of traumatic death, this article tries to explain how inadequate communication of death may adversely affect the course of mourning. The article also illustrates the basic principles of correct notification of death. In this way, we hope to contribute to the ongoing dialogue on this topic and the promotion of new studies aimed at setting best practices for those professionally involved in the challenging task of communicating that a life has ended. This would be important in order to safeguard the emotional integrity of notifiers whilst effectively helping the survivors to cope with the early stages of their difficult mourning process. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Transcultural Experiences in the Late Middle Ages: The German Literary Discourse on the Mediterranean World—Mirrors, Reflections, and Responses
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 676-701; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040676
Received: 11 September 2015 / Revised: 5 October 2015 / Accepted: 10 October 2015 / Published: 20 October 2015
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Abstract
As recent scholarship has demonstrated, the world of the Mediterranean exerted a tremendous influence not only on the societies and cultures bordering the Mediterranean Sea during the late Middle Ages, but had a huge influence on the mentality and culture of the world [...] Read more.
As recent scholarship has demonstrated, the world of the Mediterranean exerted a tremendous influence not only on the societies and cultures bordering the Mediterranean Sea during the late Middle Ages, but had a huge influence on the mentality and culture of the world north of the Alps as well because it was here where East and West met, exchanged ideas and products, and struggled to find, despite many military conflicts, some kind of transcultural. The highly complex conditions in the Mediterranean realm represented significant challenges and promises at the same time, and no traveler from Germany or England, for instance, whether a merchant or a pilgrim, a diplomat or an artist, could resist responding to the allure of the Mediterranean cultures. The corpus of travelogues and pilgrimage accounts is legion, as scholars have noted already for quite some time. But we can also observe literary reflections on the Mediterranean especially during the fifteenth century. The emergence of the late medieval and early modern prose novel is often predicated on transcultural experiences, whether they entailed military conflicts or peaceful encounters between Christians and Muslims. These literary texts did not necessarily respond to the historical events, such as the fall of Constantinople in 1453, but they document an intriguing opening up of German, English, French, and Flemish, etc., society to the Mediterranean world. The prose novels discussed in this paper demonstrate that Germany, in particular, was a significant hinterland of the Mediterranean; somewhat farther apart, but still closely connected. The literary evidence will allow us to identify how those transcultural encounters were recognized and then dealt with. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Australian Aboriginal Memoir and Memory: A Stolen Generations Trauma Narrative
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 661-675; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040661
Received: 15 July 2015 / Revised: 23 September 2015 / Accepted: 13 October 2015 / Published: 19 October 2015
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Abstract
This article proposes a re-reading of Aboriginal author Sally Morgan’s Stolen Generations narrative My Place (1987) in post-Apology Australia (2008–present). The novel tells the story of Morgan’s discovery of her maternal Aboriginal origins through the life-stories of her mother and grandmother; the object [...] Read more.
This article proposes a re-reading of Aboriginal author Sally Morgan’s Stolen Generations narrative My Place (1987) in post-Apology Australia (2008–present). The novel tells the story of Morgan’s discovery of her maternal Aboriginal origins through the life-stories of her mother and grandmother; the object of a quest for the past that is both relational and matrilineal; incorporating elements of autobiography and as-told-to memoirs to create a form of choral autoethnography. Morgan’s text explores the intergenerational consequences of child removal in the Aboriginal context and is representative of Indigenous-authored narratives in its suggestion that the children and grand-children of victims of colonial policies and practices can work through the trauma of their ancestors. I examine the literary processes of decolonization of the Indigenous writing/written self and community; as well as strategies for individual survival and cultural survivance in the Australian settler colonial context; especially visible through the interactions between traumatic memories and literary memoirs, a genre neglected by trauma theory’s concern with narrative fragmentation and the proliferation of “themed” life-writing centered on a traumatic event. This article calls for a revision of trauma theory’s Eurocentrism through scholarly engagement with Indigenous experiences such as Morgan’s and her family in order to broaden definitions and take into account collective, historical, and inherited trauma. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Interprofessional Learning as a Third Space: Rethinking Health Profession Students’ Development and Identity through the Concepts of Homi Bhabha
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 653-660; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040653
Received: 3 August 2015 / Accepted: 9 October 2015 / Published: 16 October 2015
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Abstract
Homi K. Bhabha is a post-colonial and cultural theorist who describes the emergence of new cultural forms from multiculturalism. When health profession students enculturated into their profession discuss patient care in an interprofessional group, their unilateral view is challenged. The students are in [...] Read more.
Homi K. Bhabha is a post-colonial and cultural theorist who describes the emergence of new cultural forms from multiculturalism. When health profession students enculturated into their profession discuss patient care in an interprofessional group, their unilateral view is challenged. The students are in that ambiguous area, or Third Space, where statements of their profession’s view of the patient enmesh and an interprofessional identity begins to form. The lessons learned from others ways of assessing and treating a patient, seen through the lens of hybridity allow for the development of a richer, interprofessional identity. This manuscript will seek out the ways Bhabha’s views of inbetweenness enhance understanding of the student’s development of an interprofessional viewpoint or identity, and deepen the author’s developing framework of an Interprofessional Community of Practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Humanities in Health Professions Education and Practice)
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Open AccessArticle
A Strange Cartography: Leylines, Landscape and “Deep Mapping” in the Works of Alfred Watkins
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 637-652; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040637
Received: 3 August 2015 / Accepted: 9 October 2015 / Published: 16 October 2015
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Abstract
In 1921 the photographer, antiquarian and amateur archaeologist Alfred Watkins, delivered his newly formed thesis on the origins of ancient alignments in the west of England to the Woolhope Naturalists’ Field Club of Hereford. Watkins posited a correlation between ancient forts, moats, mounds, [...] Read more.
In 1921 the photographer, antiquarian and amateur archaeologist Alfred Watkins, delivered his newly formed thesis on the origins of ancient alignments in the west of England to the Woolhope Naturalists’ Field Club of Hereford. Watkins posited a correlation between ancient forts, moats, mounds, churches, trees and place names, which he had shown to produce straight lines running across the landscape. In 1922 Watkins published his first book on the subject, Early British Trackways, mixing amateur archaeology, social history and supposition to introduce what Watkins named “leylines” and setting out the guidelines for other would-be ley hunters. This paper explores Watkins’ ley hunting as a practice of “deep mapping”, examining its use as an applied spatial engagement with the hidden trajectories of the landscape. In addition to providing a concise cultural history of the leyline, with particular reference to the works of Alfred Watkins, this paper develops a critical engagement with ley-walking through an auto-ethnographic response to a leyline that has been mapped and walked in Norfolk, England. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Deep Mapping) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessArticle
Going Deeper or Flatter: Connecting Deep Mapping, Flat Ontologies and the Democratizing of Knowledge
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 623-636; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040623
Received: 13 August 2015 / Accepted: 25 September 2015 / Published: 16 October 2015
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Abstract
The concept of “deep mapping”, as an approach to place, has been deployed as both a descriptor of a specific suite of creative works and as a set of aesthetic practices. While its definition has been amorphous and adaptive, a number of distinct, [...] Read more.
The concept of “deep mapping”, as an approach to place, has been deployed as both a descriptor of a specific suite of creative works and as a set of aesthetic practices. While its definition has been amorphous and adaptive, a number of distinct, yet related, manifestations identify as, or have been identified by, the term. In recent times, it has garnered attention beyond literary discourse, particularly within the “spatial” turn of representation in the humanities and as a result of expanded platforms of data presentation. This paper takes a brief look at the practice of “deep mapping”, considering it as a consciously performative act and tracing a number of its various manifestations. It explores how deep mapping is a reflection of epistemological trends in ontological practices of connectivity and the “flattening” of knowledge systems. In particular those put forward by post structural and cultural theorists, such as Bruno Latour, Gilles Deleuze, and Felix Guattari, as well as by theorists who associate with speculative realism. The concept of deep mapping as an aesthetic, methodological, and ideological tool, enables an approach to place that democratizes knowledge by crossing temporal, spatial, and disciplinary boundaries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Deep Mapping) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessArticle
Involved Knowing: On the Poetic Epistemology of the Humanities
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 600-622; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040600
Received: 9 June 2015 / Accepted: 28 September 2015 / Published: 16 October 2015
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Abstract
The humanities represent a type of knowledge distinct from, and yet encompassing, scientific knowledge. Drawing on philosophical hermeneutics in the tradition of the Geisteswissenschaften, as well as on the Latin rhetorical tradition and on Greek paideia, this essay presents humanities knowledge [...] Read more.
The humanities represent a type of knowledge distinct from, and yet encompassing, scientific knowledge. Drawing on philosophical hermeneutics in the tradition of the Geisteswissenschaften, as well as on the Latin rhetorical tradition and on Greek paideia, this essay presents humanities knowledge as “involved knowing”. Science, in principle, abstracts from the subjective, psychological conditions of knowing, including its emotional and willful determinants, as introducing personal biases, and it attempts also to neutralize historical and cultural contingencies. Humanities knowledge, in contrast, focuses attention on precisely these subjective and historical factors as intrinsic to any knowledge in its full human purport. In particular, poetry, which historically is the matrix of knowledge in all fields, including science, deliberately explores and amply expresses these specifically human registers of significance. The poetic underpinnings of knowledge actually remain crucial to human knowing and key to interpreting its significance in all domains, including the whole range of scientific fields, throughout the course of its development and not least in the modern age so dominated by science and technology. Full article
Open AccessArticle
The Rhythm of Non-Places: Marooning the Embodied Self in Depthless Space
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 569-599; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040569
Received: 5 August 2015 / Accepted: 21 September 2015 / Published: 10 October 2015
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Abstract
Taking as its starting point the spatiotemporal rhythms of landscapes of hyper-mobility and transit, this paper explores how the process of “marooning” the self in a radically placeless (and depthless) space—in this instance a motorway traffic island on the M53 in the northwest [...] Read more.
Taking as its starting point the spatiotemporal rhythms of landscapes of hyper-mobility and transit, this paper explores how the process of “marooning” the self in a radically placeless (and depthless) space—in this instance a motorway traffic island on the M53 in the northwest of England—can inform critical understandings and practices of “deep mapping”. Conceived of as an autoethnographic experiment—a performative expression of “islandness” as an embodied spatial praxis—the research on which this paper draws revisits ideas set out in JG Ballard’s 1974 novel Concrete Island, although, unlike Ballard’s island Crusoe (and sans person Friday), the author’s residency was restricted to one day and night. The fieldwork, which combines methods of “digital capture” (audio soundscapes, video, stills photography, and GPS tracking), takes the form of a rhythmanalytical mapping of territory that can unequivocally be defined as “negative space”. Offering an oblique engagement with debates on “non-places” and spaces of mobility, the paper examines the capacity of non-places/negative spaces to play host to the conditions whereby affects of place and dwelling can be harnessed and performatively transacted. The embodied rhythmicity of non-places is thus interrogated from the vantage point of a constitutive negation of the negation of place. In this vein, the paper offers a reflexive examination of the spatial anthropology of negative space. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Deep Mapping) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessArticle
Mapping out Patience: Cartography, Cinema and W.G. Sebald
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 554-568; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040554
Received: 1 August 2015 / Accepted: 29 September 2015 / Published: 10 October 2015
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Abstract
Cinematic cartography can be an especially powerful tool for deep mapping, as it can convey the narratives, emotions, memories and histories, as well as the locations and geography that are associated with a place. This is evident in the documentary film Patience (After [...] Read more.
Cinematic cartography can be an especially powerful tool for deep mapping, as it can convey the narratives, emotions, memories and histories, as well as the locations and geography that are associated with a place. This is evident in the documentary film Patience (After Sebald) by Grant Gee, which follows in the footsteps of W.G. Sebald and his walking tour of Suffolk, England, as described in his book The Rings of Saturn. A variety of strategies in cinematic cartography are used quite consciously in Gee’s exploration of space, place and story. Using Teresa Castro’s three cartographic shapes of cinema, I structure an analysis of the film’s opening scene through a discussion of cinematic cartography, or the plotting of geospatial data onto a map, as well as what I will differentiate as cartographic cinema, or the mapping of space through the cinematographic image. I argue that both are necessary not only to have a deep understanding of the world and our place in it, but also in how to transmit that knowledge to others. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Deep Mapping) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessArticle
A Journey across Multidirectional Connections: Linda Grant’s The Cast Iron Shore
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 535-553; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040535
Received: 28 July 2015 / Revised: 22 September 2015 / Accepted: 1 October 2015 / Published: 9 October 2015
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Abstract
Among the numerous groups that have negotiated their fragmented identities through various literary practices in the last few decades, the Jewish collective has come to symbolize the epitome of diaspora and homelessness. In particular, British-Jewish writers have recently started to reconstruct their fragmented [...] Read more.
Among the numerous groups that have negotiated their fragmented identities through various literary practices in the last few decades, the Jewish collective has come to symbolize the epitome of diaspora and homelessness. In particular, British-Jewish writers have recently started to reconstruct their fragmented memories through writing. This is an extremely interesting phenomenon in the case of those Jewish women who are fiercely struggling to find some sense of personhood as Jewish, British, female, immigrant subjects. Linda Grant’s novel The Cast Iron Shore will be analyzed so as to unveil the narrative mechanisms through which many of the identity tensions experienced by contemporary Jewish women are exhibited. The different stages in the main character’s journey will be examined by drawing on theories on the construction of Jewish identity and femininity, and by applying the model of multidirectional memory fostered by various contemporary thinkers such as Michael Rothberg, Stef Craps, Max Silverman, and Bryan Cheyette. The main claim to be demonstrated is that this narration links the (hi)stories of oppression and racism endured both by the Jewish and the Black communities in order to make the protagonist encounter the Other, develop her mature political self, and liberate her mind from rigid religious, patriarchal, and racial stereotypes. The Cast Iron Shore becomes, then, a successful attempt to demonstrate that the (hi)stories of displacement endured by divergent communities during the twentieth century are connected, and it is the establishment of these connections that can help contemporary Jewish subjects to claim new notions of their personhood in the public sphere. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Decolonizing Trauma: A Study of Multidirectional Memory in Zadie Smith’s “The Embassy of Cambodia”
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 523-534; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040523
Received: 30 July 2015 / Revised: 22 September 2015 / Accepted: 24 September 2015 / Published: 29 September 2015
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Abstract
The present article analyses Zadie Smith’s short story “The Embassy of Cambodia” (2013) as a narrative that contributes to the decolonization of trauma studies. In the introduction I will lay out briefly the state of affairs in trauma studies and the relevance of [...] Read more.
The present article analyses Zadie Smith’s short story “The Embassy of Cambodia” (2013) as a narrative that contributes to the decolonization of trauma studies. In the introduction I will lay out briefly the state of affairs in trauma studies and the relevance of trauma in Smith’s work as represented in White Teeth and NW. For the purpose of this paper, I will provide a close reading of “The Embassy of Cambodia” and I will rely on Michael Rothberg’s theory of multidirectional memory to illustrate how the history of genocide in Cambodia and the history of the protagonist of the story, which is effectively one of slavery, conflate in Smith’s text to bring to the fore silenced histories in a more ethical manner that seeks to put an end to competition and hierarchies within traumatic histories and trauma theory. This paper will explore the different juxtapositions that the story offers between individual and collective experiences of trauma and, in its explorations of multidirectional memory, the juxtaposition of collective histories of suffering. Full article
Open AccessArticle
The Poet Sings: “Resonance” in Paul Valéry’s Poietics
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 506-522; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040506
Received: 23 July 2015 / Revised: 18 September 2015 / Accepted: 21 September 2015 / Published: 29 September 2015
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Abstract
This paper analyses Paul Valéry’s theories relating to his stated goal of poetic production: the attainment of “resonance” and a “singing-state”. My intention is to defend Valéry’s theory as a valid and consistent model of the creative process in poetry. To that end, [...] Read more.
This paper analyses Paul Valéry’s theories relating to his stated goal of poetic production: the attainment of “resonance” and a “singing-state”. My intention is to defend Valéry’s theory as a valid and consistent model of the creative process in poetry. To that end, I will draw support from T. W. Adorno’s claim that Valéry’s manner of reflective journalising in his Notebooks can furnish us with what he calls “aesthetic insight”. The consistency of Valéry’s theory will be supported by comparisons with the inferentialist understanding of semantics. Valéry proves to be a reliable exemplar of what might be called a “practice-led” aesthetics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue “Reading the beat”—Musical Aesthetics and Literature)
Open AccessEditorial
“Decolonizing Trauma Studies: Trauma and Postcolonialism”—Introduction
Humanities 2015, 4(4), 500-505; https://doi.org/10.3390/h4040500
Received: 17 September 2015 / Revised: 18 September 2015 / Accepted: 18 September 2015 / Published: 24 September 2015
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1828 | PDF Full-text (150 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This Special Issue aims to explore the complex and contested relationship between trauma studies and postcolonial criticism, focusing on the ongoing project to create a decolonized trauma theory that attends to and accounts for the suffering of minority groups and non-Western cultures, broadly [...] Read more.
This Special Issue aims to explore the complex and contested relationship between trauma studies and postcolonial criticism, focusing on the ongoing project to create a decolonized trauma theory that attends to and accounts for the suffering of minority groups and non-Western cultures, broadly defined as cultures beyond Western Europe and North America. [...] Full article
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