Natural Birth: An Introduction

Jennifer Edwell // Recently, there have been a number of articles by health journalists and bioethicists critiqing the concept of “natural birth.” In these projects, writers investigate where the term natural birth comes from and how it affects the way people understand and regard birth experiences (see Martucci, 2018; Tucker, 2018). For example, in May…

Synapsis in Paris: “A Hundred Times More Dangerous than Terrorism”

Rising eco-conciousness in India and some thoughts on comparison Roanne Kantor // In what follows, I want to first extend the few scattered thoughts I presented at the CHCI conference in Paris about the shift in eco-conscious rhetoric that I observed in various sites in North India when I returned there for the first time…

Existential Research Notes, Or Pregnancy in the News

Livia Arndal Woods // For the better part of the past decade, my scholarship has focused on representations of pregnancy in the Victorian novel. This focus has often resonated with 21st century pregnancy narratives, and I’ve written about that. I’ve written less about the ways in which my scholarship has resonated with my lived experience…

Authentic Empathy & Therapeutic Alliances (Part 2)

In a previous Synapsis post, I introduced the notion of the Therapeutic Alliance (TA) – an active ingredient of psychopathology and psychotherapy. I discussed the antecedence of therapeutic relationships formed between victim service providers (VSPs) and male victims of sexual assault (e.g. rape, molestation, sodomy, etc.). My interest? Their therapeutic and extra-therapeutic rehabilitation and healing, and how this process (a continuum of healing, more or less) is impacted by social stigma. Male victims infrequently seek care, making further scholarship in this domain problematical, but welcoming.

Lasting Impressions of the Fetus in Utero

Jessica M.E. Kirwan // It was my interest in the eccentric and macabre life of John Hunter, the Scottish father of surgery, which led me some years ago to his brother William’s 1774 book, An Anatomy of the Human Gravid Uterus, or “fetus in the womb.” But it has been a deeper interest in the…

The Apperception of Pain

Gabi Schaffzin // I’ve been staring at faces lately. Of course, as a grad student in the throes of dissertation writing, that must mean these are not live faces—no one has time for that anymore. No, these are drawn and photographed faces. These faces were all illustrated or captured in an effort to create a…

Authentic Empathy & Therapeutic Alliances (Part 1)

Chuka Nestor Emezue // “Laying the pus-covered pad on the desk in front of him, he gave up his secret. During his escape from the civil war in neighbouring Congo, he had been separated from his wife and taken by rebels. His captors raped him, three times a day, every day for three years. And…