Angus and her colleagues have examined the importance of metaphor and narratives in their patients' lives, particularly the expression of emotion-laden metaphors by patients who have received serious psychological or physical illness diagnoses. What seems to be particularly important in these emotion-laden metaphors is that they allow patients to express emotions that are felt somatically or are otherwise trapped within. Building on Angus and Greenberg's metaphor, broken stories, to describe the interference to patients' expectations for their future caused by devastating illness diagnoses, this article provides clinical examples of how metaphors have helped patients express their painful feelings and how patients and therapists co-create particularly helpful metaphors. The co-creation of healing metaphors draws patients and therapists and doctors together. Within the context of such empathy, healing narratives can develop from co-created metaphors.
At the “Heart of the Matter”: Understanding the Importance of Emotion-Focused Metaphors in Patient Illness Narratives
Lynne Angus, Jeffery Scott Mio; At the “Heart of the Matter”: Understanding the Importance of Emotion-Focused Metaphors in Patient Illness Narratives. Genre 1 September 2011; 44 (3): 349–361. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00166928-1407540
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