The Pentimenti of Identity: Creative Writing as Medicine

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Primary Supervisor
Krauth, Nigel L
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Lawrence, Anthony J
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2022-07-05
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Abstract

This Masters of Arts Research submission, ‘The Pentimenti of Identity: Creative Writing as Medicine’, comprises a creative writing product, titled, ‘Apple Distance’ and an accompanying exegesis/dissertation. I explore ideas around the pentimento of identity—how we are constantly becoming who we are within a fixed idea of space and time. This complex and tenuous set of ideas about identity, identity resolutions and evolutions, is explored through the creative writing process and the creative writing product, ‘Apple Distance’. My particular focus is on how both writing (direct) and reading (vicarious) can be cathartic medicine. I lean in to the concepts of Gestalt therapy as enacted by the two protagonists of ‘Apple Distance’ (Charles the therapist and Mary the client) as I meld auto-ethnographic fiction with covert, and/or manipulated memoir. Themes of identity, belonging, regrets, amends, sanity, ‘becoming’, self-enquiry, healing and transformation will be woven throughout the exegesis and the creative product. As organic and sentient life forms, we are in every moment an evolution, a variation of a theme of an ever-emerging self-identity. We have a rooted and seemingly recognisable self and yet that self is in constant flow with an infinite number of influences that forge, coerce and shape our perpetual becoming. It is the larger life events, the rites of passage, that when examined with great awareness, cause the seismic shifts within how we perceive and are perceived: how we ‘be’ and ‘become’ in the world.

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Thesis (Masters)
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Master of Arts Research (MARes)
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School of Hum, Lang & Soc Sc
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The author owns the copyright in this thesis, unless stated otherwise.
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Subject
Creative Writing
identity
writing process
Apple Distance
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