Dissertation Oral Defenses


Candidate: Ashland Elizabeth McFarland Pym Date: November 2, 2019 Time: 12:30 pm

Myth is far more than fire-side entertainment or proto-science. It has shaped culture, history, popular entertainment, and even politics. It has also come under threat from multiple quarters: concretization through commitment to ink, use as nationalistic propaganda, and bastardized versions that ignore cultural context. The various versions of a myth must be carefully preserved in…


Candidate: Shea Conway Date: October 30, 2019 Time: 4:00 pm

This is a qualitative, quasi-experimental study into the effects on the nature of the emotional development of boys in a society that values hypermasculinity. The research used archetypal and symbolic images from a 10,000-year-old folk-myth that originated in the islands of the far South Pacific, called the Half-Boy Story, integrated with the stories of study…


Candidate: Sarah Wolfarth-Davis Date: October 28, 2019 Time: 3:00 pm

The purpose of this research was to shed light on, and draw awareness to, the impacts of the white supremacy cultural complex, both in the American collective unconscious, as well as the clinical unconscious within psychology. Eight adult clients, who identify as people of color, participated in individual semi-structured oral interviews, detailing their therapeutic encounters…


Candidate: Elyn Maeve Selu Date: October 28, 2019 Time: 12:45 pm

This dissertation details a study conducted with a group of women diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) in rural Western North Carolina who participated in a 6-week Authentic Movement class. Multiple sclerosis is framed as a physical illness, which often means that the psychological impact of living with the myriad of neurologic symptoms is rarely addressed.…


Candidate: Ciara Murray-Young Date: October 27, 2019 Time: 3:00 pm

In the literature and research on processes of change in psychotherapy the role of the unconscious has received little attention, more specifically there is almost a complete absence of research on the role of dreams in processes of change. In an attempt to respond to this neglect this Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) study explored the…


Candidate: Andrea M. Slominski Date: October 27, 2019 Time: 12:00 pm

In the twentieth century, the life span of U.S. women expanded from 45-50 years, to over 80 years. Before 1900, most women did not live past menopause. As a result of this increased longevity, this study claims there has been an expansion of women’s mythological, psychological, physiological, and spiritual life stages from three to four.…


Candidate: Harry Leroux Grammer, IV Date: October 16, 2019 Time: 4:30 pm

How do formerly incarcerated urban youth of color experience eco-liberatory praxes in the wilderness? This study explores the convergence of wilderness and eco-liberatory praxes for formerly incarcerated youth of color. The research was designed to understand how vast wilderness spaces affect young people who have lived in urban communities and juvenile prisons. Growing up in…


Candidate: Deanna N. Mercado Date: October 16, 2019 Time: 1:00 pm

Clinical research that examines the lived experiences of first-generation Mexican American women growing up in America, is a topic that is minimally discussed. As a professional Latina woman working in the field of clinical psychology, I became increasingly aware of this unspoken phenomenon through my interactions with other Latinas in a professional, academic, and clinical…


Candidate: Elizabeth Deligio Date: October 13, 2019 Time: 5:15 pm

For over twenty years, former Commander Jon Burge of the Chicago Police Department used methods of torture to coerce confessions from men and women of color on the South Side of Chicago. With the cooperation of the state’s attorney’s office and the courts, over 100 people of color were sentenced to prison, some even to…


Candidate: Maria del Rosario Sammartino Date: September 23, 2019 Time: 12:45 pm

This study was conducted to increase the understanding and explore the value of combined somatic and artistic approaches for healing trauma. The Personal Embodiment program offered at the Tamalpa Institute, which utilizes somatic and expressive arts methods, was the proposed therapeutic model. Using a depth psychological perspective, the literature review examined theoretical formulations in the…


Candidate: Susan Vappi Viglione Date: September 19, 2019 Time: 10:00 am

This research explores the nature of the transcendent function in the context of personal myth as it is illuminated by one’s astrological profile, using active imagination to engage directly with the planetary archetypes around the primary tensions and archetypal themes that characterize the individual’s life experience, in order to cultivate a closer relationship between the…


Candidate: Stephanie Smallwood Zajchowski Date: September 9, 2019 Time: 1:00 pm

The Whore of Babylon is a diabolical female figure in the Book of Revelation, the final book of the canonical Bible. Throughout history this image has been used metaphorically to communicate a threat. The focus on the Whore as a woman and mother infuses the female body with apocalyptic significance and reinforces stereotypical gender roles.…


Candidate: Susan D. Shaffer Date: September 9, 2019 Time: 10:00 am

Research bridging psychodrama and Jungian psychology has not looked at the role of the sacred, numinous, and the unitary nature of reality in the theory and practice of Jung and Moreno. This qualitative hermeneutic inquiry utilized imaginal and depth psychological approaches to explore psychodrama and Jungian psychology. Alchemy provided the sacred and transformational framework in…


Candidate: Scott Alan Goode Date: August 22, 2019 Time: 11:00 am

Universal Self is an archetype in which there is reciprocal correspondence between individual and universe. A pragmatic research design grounded in the hermeneutic tradition of inquiry is used to explore Universal Self from the perspective of Ancient Egypt by synthesizing historical texts with contemporary art and science. A heart devoted to Gods and Goddesses, and…


Candidate: Edward E. Tazer-Myers Date: August 21, 2019 Time: 11:00 am

Ever since the Enlightenment, the educated classes of Western civilization have experienced an increasingly unbridgeable gulf between faith in a transcendent spiritual reality and faith in natural science. The source of the divide appears to spring from our internal experience as knowing subjects influencing, or being influenced by, external objects and events. Various metaphysical solutions…


Candidate: Margaret H. Seawell Date: August 17, 2019 Time: 11:00 am

This hermeneutic research uses a depth psychological perspective to evaluate four texts that describe approaches to working with the phenomena of hoarding and with persons who hoard. The texts are similar in that they reject use of the shame-inducing word hoarder. Although they avoid explicitly addressing the causes of hoarding, each text considers the role…


Candidate: Jo Pierson Date: August 15, 2019 Time: 2:00 pm

This study adds to the postmodern Jungian canon of literary studies through a hermeneutic examination of Toni Wolff’s (1951/1956) essay, “Structural Forms of the Feminine Psyche,” using an interdisciplinary methodology that includes close reading from literary theory studies and Jungian literary analysis. Wolff’s material has been limited to woman’s psychology rather than seen as an…


Candidate: Soula Maria Pefkaros Date: August 12, 2019 Time: 11:00 am

This research explores the intersection of mass incarceration, ecopedagogies, and liberation pedagogy. A gardening and food skills course, using liberation pedagogy and ecopedagogies for curriculum design, was implemented at a transitional home for recently incarcerated men. The study sought to understand the impact of the curriculum on participants using a qualitative research approach. Narrative data…


Candidate: DYLAN CRAIG ODHNER Date: August 6, 2019 Time: 12:15 pm

More than any of his other archetypal forms, C. G. Jung’s conception of the shadow has found a permanent place within popular culture. But whether it manifests bodily as a shadow-figure or permeates the conscious world in the form of a shadow-realm, the Jungian shadow is presumed to be a negative and even sinister archetypal…


Candidate: Corine Michele Charm Date: August 3, 2019 Time: 1:00 pm

This study involves Jewish survivors of the Sho’ah, the attempted extinction of the Jews during the Holocaust. Significant research has been conducted on the Holocaust; however, the research on one’s experiences of trauma and storytelling, one’s ability to tell their story, and the experience of being heard while doing so, is an understudied subject. This…