Ethical Imperative of Trauma Theory and Witnessing for Native American Autobiography

Radstone indicates that the ethical goals of trauma theory are not entirely unproblematic.  At a surface level, the goal of “cultural remembrance” for the “absent presence” is unchallenged: Though trauma analysis is in its early stages of development, its ethical imperatives do appear to have been accepted: trauma analysis positions itself by analogy with the…

Allegiance and Childhood Narratives

The reason why allegiance become so important in children is that the narrative of the family fundamentally determines how a child (and the parents, too, but certainly the parents) sees his or her own self fitting within the larger framework of adult society.  As Alice Miller writes in The Gifted Child, “I had completed two…

Schwartzkopf – It Doesn’t Take a Hero

General Schwarzkopf’s autobiography opens with the mention that he was shaped by emotion – by Vietnam and his mother’s alcoholism as much as by his father being a general (x).  And I wonder now if it it was his experience in Vietnam that led to what I would consider a “conservative” approach to Desert Shield…

Trauma, Memory, Standpoint

With this project, when I’m trying to do is understand the relationship between trauma and writing and learning. This can be complicated by neurological considerations, but we have a little understanding of the complex factors that allow some individuals to overcome trauma while others remain crippled by it. The problem for my research then is…

Affective Ownership vs Attachment?

Is there a difference between collection (per Van Den Eede), attachment, and ownership?  I’m thinking the trauma of loss versus the trauma of absence (Saunders?  Or LaCapra?) I also think of this in terms of the controversy surrounding Donald Trump.  Many people appear John to his campaign because they feel that their ownership of what…

Autography Establishes Vantage, can Promote Standpoint

Gornick’s description of life writing that reveals the “loneliness of the monster” and the “cunning of the innocent” is exactly the performance of standpoint, the portrayal of understanding one’s social position within the greater cultural hierarchy.  This inherently questions the assumptions of hierarchy. The point of vantage, on the other hand, is to establish one’s…