Loss and grieving : selves between autonomy and dependence


A recurrent theme in contemporary narratives of grieving is that there is a gap between the griever’s more or less consciously chosen expression of, and acting out of, grief and loss and other people’s seeming lack of acceptance. Starting from the view that the social context of feelings and emotions are constitutive in making an emotional experience what it is, this article explores what is done and experienced in acts of grief. A phenomenological perspective is applied to analyze the conditioning of these experiences, and what the acts of grieving may accomplish in relation to various aspects of the self, indeed selves—that is, in relation to the surviving relative as well as the deceased.



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