Emotion, Space and Society

The politics of reflexivity: Subjectivities, activism, environmental conflict and Gestalt Therapy in southern Chiapas.

Marien González-Hidalgo
Gestalt psychotherapyResearchNon-randomized controlled trials or naturalistic studyEnglish
Journal Article - Paid access

Abstracts

Through the analysis of Gestalt Therapy workshops organised by a local NGO in southern Chiapas, Mexico, I explore the ways in which psychotherapeutic practice sheds light on indigenous and peasant subjectivation processes. Based on the analysis of testimonies from 23 workshop participants and personal observation, I discuss the role of psychotherapeutic practice in facilitating individual and collective reflexivity, and in fostering political fellowship and participation in community matters. Empirical evidence points to how healing interventions like the one here analysed—especially when implemented in contexts of conflict, material and symbolic dispossession—need to explicitly include work on structural issues of power in order to move beyond decontextualised, and thus depoliticised, reflexivity. This case study aids political ecologists interested in the subjective, emotional and embodied aspects of grassroots activism to comprehend how psychotherapy contributes to the construction of a private-public continuum of emotional expression, and its implication for understanding relationships between subjectivities, emotions and generative political processes.

Keywords
Journal
Emotion, Space and Society
Author
Year of Publication
2017
Volume
25
Number of Pages
54-62,
ISSN Number
1878-0040(Electronic),1755-4586(Print)
DOI
10.1016/j.emospa.2017.05.003

APA citation

González-Hidalgo, M. (2017). The politics of reflexivity: Subjectivities, activism, environmental conflict and Gestalt Therapy in southern Chiapas. Emotion, Space And Society, 25, 54-62, . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.emospa.2017.05.003