Narratives of Loss: Exploring Grief through Photography
Keywords:Grief, Self-narrative, Continuing bonds, Meaning-making, Photographs, Photo-production
Grief is not an exclusively private and intrapsychic phenomenon but a dynamic process whereby the bereaved negotiates the meaning of the loss in a way that may challenge his/her personal self-narrative. Drawing on a social constructionist model of grief, this paper features a case study where we analyse narratives of mourning elicited through a personal photographic project. The visual-based narrative methodology used in our study (photo-production) not only allows for multi-modal forms of expression and communication in the study of grief, but it also serves as an aid for individuals to scaffold further meaning-making processes which cannot be conveyed through narrative alone. The paper concludes with an invitation to reflect on the use of photography as both a possible methodological tool to explore narratives of grief and a therapeutic tool for the construction of meanings and continuing bonds with the deceased.
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