8th International Conference of Autoethnography: Bodies territories touch - 'Losing touch’; an exploration of estrangement

  • LEWIS, C. (Speaker)
  • Parsons Julie (Speaker)
  • Carly Stewart (Speaker)

    Activity: Talk or presentation typesOral presentation


    Morgan (1996) makes a clear distinction between the families ‘we live with’ (reality) and the families ‘we live by’ (ideology). In this paper we explore the implications of choosing to never ‘live with’ family members again, in terms of becoming estranged or the processes and cycles of estrangement. We draw on our lived experience of estrangement(s), including the catalysts or epiphanies that lead to the ultimate severing of relations and the significance of supportive witnesses to these decisions. We also examine the lack of narratives around estrangement and the difficulties in knowing how to respond, how to act and how to be in a social world that places a high value on close family ties. Becoming estranged is a purposeful act, it is pre-meditated and emotionally charged, it troubles notions of family and intimate relations, it guarantees an enforced and enduring physical separation from someone previously loved and/or with whom one has shared intimacies. In this paper we consider some of the ways in which estrangement ensures a loss of touch. This is not just in terms of the isolation from social contact, many have been forced to experience due to lockdown, but a corporeal and embodied loss.
    Period18 Jul 202120 Jul 2021
    Event title8th International Conference of Autoethnography : Bodies Territories Touch
    Event typeConference