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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Cherokee American Voices in Concept Analysis of Self-in-Relationship through Narrative; Theme; Metaphor: Internal Family Systems (IFS)
by McVicker, Suzan A. M., Ph.D., Fielding Graduate University, 2017, 285; 10605351
Abstract (Summary)

Since Encounter, Cherokees have straddled their worldview and the Euro-American worldview with success in cultural persistence. In any worldview, the Self is a pivotal concept. Recombinant, dialogical, emergent, and relational research methodologies are currently evolving a reconceptualization of Self. This dissertation re-centers a Cherokee American conceptualization of the Self-In-Relationship through in-depth concept analysis drawing on Indigenous and Western ways of knowing.

Interviews with Cherokee Americans are held in focus through the lenses of narrative content, theme, metaphor, and the Internal Family Systems (IFS) model concept of Self. Analyses of narrative interview transcripts surface a concept of Self expressed in English after transgenerational trauma that aligns with wisdom teachings descending through Cherokee language. Participant metaphors juxtaposed with IFS metaphors provide a crosswalk between meta worldviews where respectful dialogue among equals is more possible. Metaphors are drawn from themes: 1) Losses that resulted in hiding who we are; 2) Blood quantum, passing for White, and mixed identity; 3) Self as described through essential attributes of harmony and balance; and 4) Releasing impacts of historical trauma.

Ancient Cherokee knowings regarding a Self-In-Relationship concept emerge as coherent with a newly established conceptualization of Self that descends from Western lineages, the IFS model. Findings from Cherokee American perspectives may contribute to widening a crosswalk for those who negotiate Indigenous and Western worldviews to support individual and collective healing; stronger tribal sovereignty; individual redignification; and a language for wellbeing.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Nelson, Annabelle L.
Commitee: Murphy-Shigematsu, Stephen, Willis, David B.
School: Fielding Graduate University
Department: Human and Organization Development
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-B 78/12(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Environmental Justice, Psychology, Native American studies
Keywords: Cherokee worldview, Concept analysis, Conceptualization of Self, Indigenous knowledge, Internal family systems (IFS) model, Self-In-Relationship
Publication Number: 10605351
ISBN: 978-0-355-10514-8
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