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On meeting Linda: An intimate encounter with (not-)belonging in the current conjuncture

Roseneil, Sasha (2014) 'On meeting Linda: An intimate encounter with (not-)belonging in the current conjuncture.' Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society, 19 (1). pp. 19-28. ISSN 1088-0763

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This paper begins with an 'experience-near' account of the author's encounter with a woman she met whilst walking her dog in an east London park one winter afternoon. The woman was lying on the ground amongst the trees and, when approached, talked with the author about her feelings of isolation from family and community, about her alcoholism, suicidality and unsuccessful attempts to access help from the welfare state, and about the connections to animals and nature that kept her alive. The paper goes on to offer a psychoanalytically informed psychosocial commentary on this meeting and on the human relational vulnerability of which it speaks, exploring what we might learn about belonging and not belonging in the contemporary conjuncture, as welfare spending is cut, economic inequalities increase, and the 'social investment state' targets the 'worthy' welfare subject at the expense of people like Linda. The paper discusses the resonances between Linda's life as glimpsed through this encounter and the author's recent psychosocial research on intimacy and care under conditions of individualisation and detraditionalisation. Through this, the paper explores the practices of ethical relationality that are at the heart of the individual's struggle to belong and through which social belonging is created.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences
Faculty of Social Sciences > Sociology, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 22 Dec 2016 16:43
Last Modified: 13 Apr 2022 07:22

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