Psychological/Medical Method to Help People Cope with Adversity: Nine Case Studies of Self-Defining Stories

Author: Ditton, Mary
Year:2015
Pages:456
ISBN:1-4955-0275-9
978-1-4955-0275-0
Price:279.95
An innovative book written for the benefit of professionals who, in their various roles, deal with people beset by adversity. These self-narrative stories of adversity ground the ideas within the book to real-life experiences, real-life sorrows, and real-life triumphs. The book looks at adversity from a real-life perspective, not just from the individual’s perspective. The lessons gained from this study are significant for theory and practice in the helping professions.

Reviews

“Dr. Mary Ditton has written an interesting and academically sound book using a novel approach…The key features of the book that I found innovative were the use of self-narrative as a methodology in adversity studies, and the exploration of the linkages between popular Australian fiction and the stories that people tell about themselves…The self-defining stories demonstrate the effort involved in managing real-life adversities that are applicable to many field of practice.”
-Professor Kim Usher,
Head of School of Health,
University of New England


“This research builds on resilience, life events, and post-traumatic stress/growth literature in three ways: 1) self-defining stories expand the contextual environment for life events’ studies; 2) research with adversity captures accumulation factors that are part of real life experiences; and 3) conducting research years after adversity allows the long term impact to be demonstrated.”
-Dr. Christine Tilley,
Queensland University of Technology


“Dr. Mary Ditton has written an important book, analyzing adversity and its impact on identity. Using a life narrative approach, she interviewed men and women who have suffered from an unusual depth of adversity in their lives and yet have not only overcome their difficulties but have emerged transformed, and often strengthened, by their experiences…through the telling of their life narratives, these men and women were given a gift i.e., the opportunity to redefine themselves and their identities, This is also a gift to the reader – an insight into the human spirit.”
-Dr. Sally Hunter,
Senior Lecturer
School of Rural Medicine,
University of New England


Table of Contents

List of Figures and Tables
Abstract
Foreword by Professor Kim Usher
Acknowledgements
Introduction
-The Background
-Outline of the Chapters
-The Approach Taken
Part 1: Socio-cultural Context and Concepts
Chapter 1: Australian Popular Fiction and the Socio-Cultural Context
-Socio-Cultural Context
-Cloudstreet by Tim Winton
-The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak
-A Fortunate Life by Albert Facey
-The Harp in the South by Ruth Park
-The Power of One by Bryce Courtenayt
-Jasper Jones by Craig Silvey
-The Magic Pudding by Norman Lindsay
-The Slap by Christos Tsiolkas
-The Secret River by Kate Grenville
-Picnic at Hanging Rock by Joan Lindsay
Summary
Chapter 2:Overview of Relevant Academic Concepts
-Adversity and Identity Theory
-Resilience
-Life events
-Post-traumatic stress/post-traumatic growth / social causes of psychological stress
Summary
Chapter 3: Methodology
-Introduction
-Aims
-Approach
-Method
-Interviews to obtain life stories
-Analysis
-Reviewing interviews
Part 2: Self-Defining Stores and Their Analysis
Chapter 4: Self-Defining Stores about Illness
-It’s not how it should be! By Lue
-Overview of It’s not how it should be!,br> -Analysis of It’s not how it should be!
-Re-storying your life: Turtle dreaming – like swimming across the Pacific by Pat
-Overview of Re-storying your life: Turtle dreaming – like swimming across the Pacific
-Analysis of Re-storying your life: Turtle dreaming – like swimming across the Pacific
Chapter 5: Self-Defining Stories about Work
-Justice is a Fickle Thing by Bruce
- Overview of Justice is a Fickle Thing
-Analysis of Justice is a Fickle Thing
-There is no God but There is only God by Peter
-Overview of There is no God but There is only God,br> -Analysis of There is no God but There is only God
-What defined me Three or Four Years Ago doesn’t define Me Now by Jim
-Overview of What defined me Three or Four Years Ago doesn’t define Me Now
-Analysis of What defined me Three or Four Years Ago doesn’t define Me Now
Chapter 6: Self-Defining Stories About Relationships
-But Other People keep You Where You are by Ingerid
-Remembering with Hope – A Homily by Ingerid
-Overview of But Other People keep You Where You are
-Analysis of But Other People keep You Where You are
-I just had this Mean Mongrel Thing in my Head that just said, ‘Watch me’ By Sheryl
-Overview of I just had this Mean Mongrel Thing in my Head that just said, ‘Watch me’
-Analysis of I just had this Mean Mongrel Thing in my Head that just said, ‘Watch me.’
-It’s really Hard because It just All rolled into One in a way by Meg
-Overview of it’s really Hard because it just All rolled into One, in a Way
-Analysis of it’s really hard because It just all rolled into One, in a Way
Chapter 7:Self-Defining Story about Migration
-Taking doesn’t Count by Rahim
-Overview of Taking doesn’t Count
-Analysis of Taking doesn’t Count
Chapter 8: Re-writing the Self-Defining Stories
-Re-written Narratives about Illness
-its not how it should be! By Lue
-Re-storying your life: Turtle dreaming – like swimming across the Pacific by Pat
-Re-written Narratives about Work
-There is no Deity – There is only Consciousness by Peter
Chapter 9: Discussion and Conclusions
-General Overview
-Personal Review of Self-Defining Stories
-Implications of this Research
-Recommendations
-Conclusions
References
Indices
-Author Index
-General Index