The dreamy state: an autoethnography of spiritual meaning in epilepsy

Activity: Academic Talks or PresentationsConference Presentation


Ironically, rigorous study of anything has a tendency to drain it of its feeling, its blood (Moriarty, 2013). Nowhere more so than in psychology, which can be prone to ‘psychologising’ and losing a sense of the embodied individual (Muncey, 2010).  Auto-ethnography is a contemporary qualitative research method, where not only is the presence of the researcher acknowledged, but the researcher is a part of the group being researched; an anthropological-insider (Hayano, 1979). An autobiographical genre of research, auto-ethnography provides “explanation and meaning through narrative, without categorisation or simplification of experience” (Ellis & Bochner, 2000, p. 739). It offers a deep and rigorous insight “coming from feeling...from the heart, based on personal experience” (Grant, Short & Turner, 2013, p. 11). Auto-ethnography seeks to evoke a lived experience in a socio-cultural context through a variety of expressive genres (Bochner & Ellis, 2002). My research involves an auto-ethnographic account of epilepsy as a lens with which to view the so called ‘anomalous’ experience of auras in epilepsy. I propose to present an auto-ethnographic paper that highlights how this approach is able to offer understanding of emotion that is not easily accessible through other research methods (Laslett, 1999).

Period8 Apr 2015
Event titlePsychology of Emotion and Feeling
Event typeConference
Conference number1
LocationNorthamptonShow on map
Degree of RecognitionNational