Crystal Spiegel, LCSW 303 5th Avenue, NY 646-846-2947
Digital storytelling is a creative expression for artists and non artists. No experience necessary.
A thoughtful self-narrated story witnessed by others may be terrifying yet healing. When our self narratives get stuck it can be transformational to organize them through visuals, sounds, and words. Video editing allows for you to control your new narrative.
This pilot study was conducted in partial fulfillment of requirements for a PhD in Expressive Therapies at Lesley University.
My education and training in social work, radio and television, Internal Family Systems (IFS), Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, and Expressive Arts have an influence on the research design and epistemology. My identity as an educated White cisgender female is noted within the framework of critical theory and the awareness of a larger system where the meaning of those demographics represents a certain level of social power that will intersect with the demographics of the participants of this study. Acknowledgment of race, power, and researcher/participant power dynamics will be a part of this study.
The underlying beliefs that support body-oriented/somatic psychotherapy are that traumatic memory is stored in an area of the brain associated with the felt sense (Malchiodi, 2020; van der Kolk, 2014), or felt in the body. The theory of change embedded in this psychotherapy model is that therapeutic outcomes or transformation happens when working with the felt sense and not exclusively with verbal talk therapy (van der Kolk, 2014). Malchiodi (2020) noted film as a storytelling technique that incorporates the felt sense which supports the author’s position as being informed by an arts-based, body-oriented approach to digital storytelling.
My training in IFS has specifically supported the rationale for the digital storytelling directive to focus on a part or story that has been silenced due to the techniques on the unburdening and liberation of silenced parts found in IFS (Schwartz, 2001). Through the lens of the IFS model silenced parts of ourselves can be vulnerable parts that hold the memory of emotional or psychological suffering. When these parts are unburdened or liberated from the suffering through mindful therapeutic curiosity this leads to validation and being witnessed, and a therapeutic transformation can occur (Schwartz, 2001).
Overall, my belief and practice using an IFS, body-oriented trauma, and Expressive Arts therapy model of change informs all aspects of this pilot research from the intention to study the therapeutic experience of adults who create a digital story to how the digital storytelling story circle will be focused, to a bias that digital storytelling may facilitate therapeutic transformation.
Malchiodi, C. (2020). Trauma and expressive arts therapy: Brain, body, and imagination in the healing process. The Guilford Press.
Schwartz, R. (2001). Introduction to the internal family systems model. Trailheads Publications.
van der Kolk, B. (2014). The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Truama. Penguin Books.
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