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Storytelling scholars and the mythic child: Rhetorical aesthetics in two case studies

Jones, Raya Abigail ORCID: 2011. Storytelling scholars and the mythic child: Rhetorical aesthetics in two case studies. Culture & Psychology 17 (3) , pp. 339-358. 10.1177/1354067X11408135

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Rhetorical and literary deconstruction of psychologists’ texts is an established line of postmodern critique, but the aesthetic-affective register of reader—text interactions has received little attention. The issue overlaps inquiries about embodied aspects of subjectivity. Drawing partly on Bakhtin’s dialogism, this study explores two themes concerning the interplay between textual and readerly dynamics through a close-up on two texts containing case studies of children. The textual dynamics of the ‘‘Anna’’ study presented by Jung in 1909, and republished with Supplementary material in 1946 (Jung, 1946/1991), illustrates dialogical tensions arising from ambivalence about whether the epistemic mode is ‘‘paradigmatic’’ (logico-scientific) or ‘‘narrative.’’ An analysis of the Bulger murder, as offered by Nightingale and Cromby in a 2002 article, exemplifies the rhetorical function of the ‘‘child’’ image through its emotional impact on the reader, notably a dissonance between a notion of childhood innocence and the case of children who commit murder. The conclusion reflects on theorizing about embodied subjectivity as applicable to the two target texts.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Bakhtin; childhood; embodied subjectivity; Jung; narrative mode
Publisher: SAGE
ISSN: 1354-067X
Last Modified: 21 Oct 2022 10:34

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