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Unfitting Stories

Narrative Approaches to Disease, Disability, and Trauma

Edited by Angela D. Henderson, Carla Paterson, Connie Canam, and Valerie Raoul
Subjects Psychology, Ethnography
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Hardcover : 9780889205093, 376 pages, March 2007

Table of contents

Table of Contents for Unfitting Stories: Narrative Approaches to Disease, Disability, and Trauma edited by Valerie Raoul, Connie Canam, Angela D. Henderson, and Carla Paterson
Acknowledgments and Dedication
Introduction — Narrative Frames
Making Sense of Disease, Disability, and Trauma: Normative and Disruptive Stories | The Editors
Interdisciplinarity and Postdisciplinarity in Health Research in Canada | Judy Z. Segal
Part I — Public Framing of Personal Narratives
Introduction: Aesthetics, Authenticity, and Audience | The Editors
Authorizing the Story: Lauren Slaters Memoirs of Mental Illness | Helen Buss
Telling Trauma: Two Narratives of Psychiatric Hospitalization | Hilary Clark
AIDS, Trauma, and Temporality: Paul Monette between Two Deaths | Lisa Diedrich
Paper Thin: Agency and Anorexia in Geneviéve Brisac’s Petite | Barbara Havercroft
Incomprehensible Density of Being: Aestheticizing Cancer | Ulrich Teucher
Challenging Subjects: Bodies, Texts, and Legitimacy | Heidi Janz and | Julie Rak
The Techtonics of Trauma: Father-Daughter Incest in Film | Gail Finney
The Silvering Screen: Age and Trauma in Kurasawa’s Rhapsody in August | Sally Chivers
Part II — Representing the Subject
Introduction: Narrative in Qualitative Research and Therapeutics | The Editors
Writing about Illness: Therapy or Testimony? | Anne Hunsaker Hawkins
Constructing a ``Schizophrenic’’ Identity | Barbara Schneider
Space, Temporality and Subjectivity in a Narrative of Psychotic Experience | Lourdes Rodriguez Del Barrio
Re-sounding Images: Outsiders in Blackridge’s Sunnybrook | Joy James
(Story-)Telling It like It Is: How Narratives Teach at L’Arche | Pamela Cushing
Disrupting the Academic Self: Living with Lupus | Janet MacArthur
Women Surviving Hemorrhagic Stroke: Narratives of Meaning | Sharon Dale Stone
Men, Sport, and Spinal Cord Injury: Identity Dilemmas | Brett Smith and | Andrew C. Sparkes
Part III — The Larger Picture
Introduction: Metanarrative Politics and Polemics | The Editors
Disability Income: Narratives of Women with Multiple Sclerosis Lyn Jongbloed
Narratives of Trauma and Aboriginal Postsecondary Students | Robert Procyk and | Christine Crowe
Social Trauma and Serial Autobiography: Healing and Beyond | Bina Toledo Freiwald
Reports from the Psych Wars | Richard Ingram
Agoraphobia, Social Order, and Psychiatric Narrative | Shelley Z. Reuter
The Disease Is Responsible? Drug Addiction and the Disease Model | Joanne Muzak
Temporal Assumptions: Aging with Cystic Fibrosis | J. Daniel Schubert
Ableist Limits on Self-Narration: The Concept of Post-Personhood | James Overboe
Narrative Conclusions — An Example of Cross-Disciplinary Analysis
Margaret Edson’s Play Wit: Death at the End or the End of Death? | Valerie Raoul, Connie Canam, Gloria Oneyoziri, Carla Paterson


Unfitting Stories: Narrative Approaches to Disease, Disability, and Trauma illustrates how stories about ill health and suffering have been produced and received from a variety of perspectives. Bringing together the work of Canadian researchers, health professionals, and people with lived experiences of disease, disability, or trauma, it addresses central issues about authority in medical and personal narratives and the value of cross- or interdisciplinary research in understanding such experiences.
The book considers the aesthetic dimensions of health-related stories with literary readings that look at how personal accounts of disease, disability, and trauma are crafted by writers and filmmakers into published works. Topics range from psychiatric hospitalization and aestheticizing cancer, to father-daughter incest in film. The collection also deals with the therapeutic or transformative effect of stories with essays about men, sport, and spinal cord injury; narrative teaching at L’Arche (a faith-based network of communities inclusive of people with developmental disabilities); and the construction of a “schizophrenic” identity. A final section examines the polemical functions of narrative, directing attention to the professional and political contexts within which stories are constructed and exchanged. Topics include ableist limits on self-narration; drug addiction and the disease model; and narratives of trauma and Aboriginal post-secondary students.
Unfitting Stories is essential reading for researchers using narrative methods or materials, for teachers, students, and professionals working in the field of health services, and for concerned consumers of the health care system. It deals with practical problems relevant to policy-makers as well as theoretical issues of interest to specialists in bioethics, gender analysis, and narrative theory.
Read the chapter “Social Trauma and Serial Autobiography: Healing and Beyond” by Bina Freiwald on the Concordia University Library Spectrum Research Repository website.