“When normal words just aren’t enough”: the experience and significance of creative writing at times of personal difficulty

McCartney, Michelle (2011) “When normal words just aren’t enough”: the experience and significance of creative writing at times of personal difficulty. D.Clin.Psych. thesis, Canterbury Christ Church University.

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Abstract

Section A consists of a review of the literature relating the therapeutic use of creative writing. It highlights gaps in the literature and suggesting potential avenues of further research.
Section B presents the findings of a phenomenological study which aimed to explore the experience and significance of creative writing at times of personal difficulty through the analysis of written accounts.
Method. Twenty one people who had personal experience of creative writing in the context of difficult life experiences submitted written accounts. These were analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) (Smith, Larkin & Flowers, 2009).
Results. Four main themes were identified: 1) Struggle with a difficult experience, 2) Turning to creative writing, 3) Dealing with it ‘as a matter of words’ and 4) Rejoining the world. A conceptual model illustrating how these master themes are related is presented.
Conclusion. Creative writing was deemed to have played an important and meaningful role in helping participants to integrate and move beyond difficult life experiences. Limitations and clinical implications of the study are discussed and suggestions are made for future research.
Section C involves a critical appraisal of the study presented in Section B. Reflections on the process of the study, as well as further implications and clinical applications are discussed.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Creative writing, Mental health, Interpretative phenomenological analysis study
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology > BF0636 Applied psychology
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN0101 Authorship
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine > RA0790 Mental health services. Mental illness prevention
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0435 Psychiatry > RC0475 Therapeutics. Psychotherapy > RC0489 Arts therapy
Divisions: pre Nov-2014 > Faculty of Social and Applied Sciences > Applied Psychology
Depositing User: Users 36 not found.
Date Deposited: 24 Nov 2011 10:40
Last Modified: 22 Sep 2016 17:42
URI: https://create.canterbury.ac.uk/id/eprint/10339

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Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00