Medical Interventions, Suddenness and Finding A New Normal

Kristina Fleuty // I have approached most of my posts for Synapsis during this academic year with a view to relating medical and health humanities topics in some way to veterans or the military experience. For my final post this year, I return to Harry Parker’s contemporary novel, Anatomy of a Soldier, aspects of which…

Veterans, Transition and Bodily Identity

Kristina Fleuty // I wonder, does engaging in writing practices offer any health benefits specifically to the veteran population? Furthermore, if there is evidence of health benefits; does any of this evidence offer insight into how the individual comes to terms with their changing bodily and psychological identity during the transition process? I would like…

Metaphor, Medical Decisions and the Military Mindset

Kristina Fleuty // How would you describe what it is like to live with an injured and chronically painful limb? How would you communicate to a medical professional your reasoning for wanting the elective amputation of that limb? I have recently been pondering how people talk about their bodily experiences, both to their friends and…

Towards a Meditation on Pain

How do people talk about and understand lived experiences of pain? For the past year, I have immersed myself in the world of qualitative research into lived experiences of trauma, including in relation to amputation, a large part of which is the experience, management and understanding of pain. Some of this research has been motivated…

Tears and rain. Finding a bird and a depressed place.

The first time I saw a parliament of rooks flocking in the early evening sky, I was studying for my Master’s degree. Let me explain. We found ourselves on the edge of a field with naturalist Mark Cocker, just as dusk was turning the clouds a mottled grey colour, waiting for some birds to appear….

Breaking Through Trauma with Creative Writing and Bibliotherapy

What benefits might be found in writing about experiences of trauma? Alternatively, what might be the effect of reading about somebody else’s experiences? In my October and November posts, I explored aspects of the medical and rehabilitative object-human relationships in Harry Parker’s novel Anatomy of a Soldier. Although a work of fiction, Parker’s novel is semi-autobiographical….