The long and winding road to reflexology: A post-structural narrative inquiry
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AuthorsEdwards Price, Sally
MetadataShow full item record
AbstractBackground: Reflexology has suffered a troubled and tumultuous journey travelling a long and winding road, experiencing times of interest and intrigue alongside suspicion and doubt. This study explores the topic through a post-structural lens to discover new possibilities for the discipline. Methodology: The research design used a narrative inquiry and emerged a Derridean theoretical approach encompassing some of the key concepts of Jacques Derrida’s writings (Derrida, 2016, 1993, 1982, 1978). It concerns poetical notions of text, context and intertextuality as a backdrop to re-explore traditional stories told by five prominent reflexologists accompanied by an autobiographical story. Using narrative inquiry, it explored how narratives allow reflexologists to perform and make heard the whispered voices in order to let reflexology stories (the reflexstories) breathe (Frank, 2012). Findings: This study firstly, at a textual level, uncovered the literature surrounding reflexology (the reflexliterature) proffering an evolution of the therapy and secondly, for context, embraced the methodology of narrative inquiry, eliciting synchronic narratives. Beatles song titles have been used as headings, bringing into focus my own intertextuality to capture the spirit of Derridean thought which emerged during the era reflexology was presenting as a popular practice. The study contributes to furthering the body of knowledge of reflexology by providing personal narratives and poems for pedagogic application and explores emerging cultural and dialogical accounts of the modality in order to find possibilities for practice rather than affording truth claims on its efficacy and effectiveness. Moreover, it offers a theoretical model for the application of a schema of critical questioning so as to expose the metaphysical assumptions of the subject in question which revealed reflexology as a spectre in healthcare. Recommendations: A standardised data collection tool could be developed to replace the use of many varied questionnaires within the research on reflexology and the numerous reflexology associations could try again, to converge and adopt one collective organisation. Reflexology could be utilised in other areas of healthcare identified in the literature rather than only the current provision. Finally, the theoretical model could be exploited for other subjects in order to interrogate the hierarchies, dichotomies and binary oppositions which are present within the topic of inquiry.
PublisherUniversity of Wolverhampton
TypeThesis or dissertation
DescriptionA thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements of the University of Wolverhampton for the degree of Doctorate in Health and Wellbeing.
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