The relationship between argument and narrative has been the subject of much debate, particularly in the area of law, where a number of theorists have argued for the priority of one over the other in the decision-making process, the premise being that argumentation and narrative are two distinct text forms. Through the rhetorical analysis of a series of expert reports in a case of alleged child abuse, we seek to explore the dynamics between argumentation and narrative. In so doing, we argue that while certain actions may undermine the robustness of an argument, it is these very actions that make possible the telling of a persuasive story. We conclude with a plea for the development of rhetorical skills among social workers so as to be better able to discern future directions for the benefit of service users.
Contemporary initiatives against anti-LGBTQ bullying in the United States include enumeration policies, which name sexual orientation as an unacceptable basis for bullying. Conservative opposition to these and other initiatives has been swift, taking discursive and specifically narrative form. This article examines how opponents of prevention and intervention use narrative to resist efforts to curb anti-LGBTQ bullying, based on analysis of 22 public statements challenging anti-bullying legislation. They deny anti-LGBTQ bullying’s impact and reassign victimizer and victim positions. Achieving justice for anti-LGBTQ bullying victims requires recognition of the stories that uphold heteronormative power.
Some suggest the ethos of the Tree of Life (ToL) group aligns with the concept of “personal-recovery” promoted in mental health policy. Thus, it is claimed that the group could be a useful approach within UK mental health services. This review collated 14 papers to explore whether existing literature regarding the ToL group supports this assertion. The papers were synthesized using the thematic analysis method and three broad themes were identified, which support the argument for its utility within services. These were recovery-aligned themes, the inclusivity of the model, and group processes relevant to mental health contexts. The papers are critically appraised, key concerns regarding the wider literature discussed, and clinical implications summarized.
This article examines the construction of identity and masculinity in two cases of disability autobiography. Retrospectively written autobiographical accounts of early-onset disability were analyzed abductively by using the model of narrative circulation (MNC), with a thematic content analysis being used to organize the data. Both narrators constructed their adult identity as men in relation to the available disability narratives and living conditions. Three intertwined dimensions regarding the construction of identity could be observed: external expectations, internal intentions, and locally situated narratives of work. The narratives may be considered to represent an alternative way to bypass, overcome, and refresh the culturally dominant stock of stories.
An important element of many forms of counseling is the narrative articulation of the client experience. This article aims to define self-narrative elicitation methods, to explore their use in counseling, and to present a quantitative empirical examination of narrative interview instructions. It examines whether the self-narrative inclination and selected situational factors influence the narrativity level of the utterances when elicited by different types of self-narrative instructions. The results show that the utterances produced by three different types of instructions (open-ended question; photo-elicitation; life-as-book metaphor) do not differ in narrativity level. The narrativity of utterances measured micro-analytically on the lexical level remains independent from the external factors (sequence, topic, type of instruction). Given the level of narrativity and length of response, the three instructions are close to each other. At the same time the narrativity is significantly influenced by self-narrative inclination. It is worth acknowledging personal features that can change the way the story is told in interviews and thus affect the counseling practice.
Despite the growing interest in language learning histories, autobiographical reasoning, a central concept in narrative psychology, has rarely appeared in second language acquisition research, despite the fact that autobiographical reasoning has been found to be central to identity formation, correlating with resilience, motivation, and well-being. This article conducts a narrative analysis of the language learning histories of two English as a foreign language (EFL) student teachers, focusing on three qualities of their autobiographical reasoning: integration, valence, and vividness. It shows how differences in their autobiographical reasoning correlate with differences in their motivation and confidence. It also argues that production of language learning histories can contribute to the development of more confident and motivated learners and teachers.
Cultural representations of Alzheimer’s disease typically focus on the social and emotional burdens felt by family and friends, diluting or excluding the experience of the sufferer. This article demonstrates how narrative fiction may help us to engage with the experiences of individuals with Alzheimer’s disease by imagining what it might be like to suffer from the disease ourselves. Demonstrating the humanized and subjective understanding of Alzheimer’s disease articulated in Olivia Rosenthal’s (2007) On n’est pas là pour disparaître [We’re Not Here to Disappear (2015)] this article also exposes the limitations of narrative fiction as a means of highlighting our own ignorance in the face of others’ experiences.
In this 2019 John McKendy Memorial Lecture,1 Dr. William Randall discussed how few topics intrigue us more than death. Yet few topics are more taboo—not unlike aging, with which, in many people’s minds, it can seem synonymous. But just as a narrative perspective on aging enables us to envision its more positive potentials in terms of meaning, wisdom, and spirituality, so a narrative perspective can shed a more redemptive light on death, presumably the final event in the story of our lives. Drawing on insights from psychology, gerontology, cosmology, theology, and literary theory, Dr. Randall used the concept of narrative openness to entertain alternative and ultimately enticing ways of storying the so-called end of life.