Dissertation Oral Defenses


Candidate: Pargol Khoshnoud Date: January 20, 2020 Time: 10:00 am

Children of immigrants are often called upon to interpret and translate language and cultural information for their parents and other adults in their lives in a process called language brokering. Using an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis, the experiences of five female Iranian Language brokers were explored to understand the meanings these women made of their lived…


Candidate: Kathryn O’Toole Fifer Makeyev Date: January 16, 2020 Time: 10:00 am

This dissertation examines perspectives on reincarnation from Hindu, Buddhist, Greek, early Christian, and Gnostic traditions as well as Western Hermeticism and Theosophy. While these views differ in significant respects, I argue that the purpose of reincarnation is to enable a soul to gradually improve or evolve through a series of lifetimes. The study asks three…


Candidate: Rebecca Lynn Peterson Date: January 9, 2020 Time: 11:00 am

This depth psychological study explored the effects of embodied imagination dream work (Bosnak, et. al.) on participant dreamers’ felt connections with nature. The intuitive inquiry hermeneutic research applied theoretical lenses of archetypal psychology (Hillman) and Indigenous knowledge (Deloria, Cajete, Kimmerer) to examine themes that emerged out of eight individual dream work sessions, guided by the…


Candidate: John Bonaduce Date: January 6, 2020 Time: 11:00 am

Mythobiogenesis seeks the origin of myth, religion, and ritual not only in the vastness of human history, but in the confining nucleus of a human cell. This place of origin is by no means obvious and we refer to it simply as a “trysting place,” the secret rendezvous of mind and body. Data in support…


Candidate: Jacqueline Steinberg Shamtoob Date: January 4, 2020 Time: 12:30 pm

A hermeneutic phenomenological methodology was used to collect data in order to understand and explain eating disorders from a psychosomatic perspective. The following chapters of this dissertation include a comprehensive overview of psychoanalytic literature on psychosomatics and eating disorders, a methodology chapter, a presentation of the findings extrapolated from the literature reviewed, and implications of…


Candidate: Megan Nichole Payer Date: December 20, 2019 Time: 11:00 am

This study utilized Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis to illuminate the experiences of women who practiced yoga while living with autoimmune diseases, and explored how their experiences might be related to Jungian principles of individuation, self-development and transformation. Results indicate yoga as a transformative discipline improved women’s physical, emotional, spiritual and psychological well-being. Practicing the various techniques…


Candidate: Marialidia Marcotulli Date: December 17, 2019 Time: 4:00 pm

The human relationship with water has shifted from one of cooperative engagement as displayed by indigenous peoples before European colonization, to the treatment of water as an on-demand commodity. To harness water’s natural power is also to gain control over its access and distribution. The introduction of scarcity further advances this power dynamic by introducing…


Candidate: Bobbi J. Meyer Date: December 17, 2019 Time: 1:00 pm

In this study, one nurse practitioner examined the difficulties presenting in a rural health clinic setting. Burnout, depression, and suicidality can result when these difficulties are met with poor coping mechanisms. Using the qualitative approach of autoethnography, energy healing in the form of shamanic training was found to impact the feelings of hopelessness. The ability…


Candidate: Pesach Chananiah Date: December 9, 2019 Time: 12:45 pm

This dissertation uses an autoethnographic, participatory action research approach to consider James Hillman’s 1992 call for therapy to be a “cell of revolution,” rather than a response to the pathological or disadvantaged—“a kind of building of doorways, opening conduits, and making channels” (Hillman & Ventura, 1992, p. 208). Through case studies in a broad-based organizing…


Candidate: Pierson K. Matthews Date: December 8, 2019 Time: 12:00 pm

The problem of mythological, cultural, physical, social, and psychological dismemberment is explored within the context of the collective unconscious, the past and present cultural milieu, and particular artists works. This research focused on how the archetype of dismemberment was manifested in the World War I era and again now in the current era of globalization…


Candidate: David Michael Maddux Date: December 2, 2019 Time: 11:00 am

This dissertation examines the legendary hero Hercules through his twelve impos-sible labors as he aims to achieve redemption from the death of his family and fulfill the ultimate reward of his apotheosis. The labors are not merely physical tasks in a story of mythic greatness, but arduous trials that reconciled his whole being through the…


Candidate: Marcy C. Price Date: November 23, 2019 Time: 11:00 am

This study utilized Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) to explore loss of home as a result of natural disaster: Natural Disaster-related Loss of Home (NDLH). Four survivors were interviewed who experienced NDLH in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. A heuristic lens was employed to examine the researcher’s own NDLH experience in the wake of Hurricane Ivan.…


Candidate: John Kenneth Bucher Jr. Date: November 21, 2019 Time: 2:00 pm

Modern Mythology in popular culture is represented with visual aesthetics, ritualistic elements, and thematic motifs that all nod at those found in ancient mythological traditions. Creators are utilizing new mediums to explore these ideas faster than researchers have been able to give rigorous analysis to them in many cases. George Lucas’s Star Wars saga, however,…


Candidate: Leon David Aliski Date: November 14, 2019 Time: 3:00 pm

Passed down from generation to generation for thousands of years, oral histories told by Plains Indian peoples—Lakota, Dakota, Arapaho, Arikara, Blackfeet, Cheyenne, Pawnee, and many other tribes—account for how the animals, people, plants, and natural forces of the world came to be. As expressions of a cultural stream of ancestral memory, oral histories are interwoven…


Candidate: Laura Virginia Grace Date: November 12, 2019 Time: 3:45 pm

This study delves into the realms of resilience when people are confronted with environmental adversity. Harnessing the wisdom from five seasoned environmental activists, this study focuses on the core qualities of resilience and overcoming the daily stressors that result from encountering the rapidly changing environment in the 21st century. Five co-researchers included (1) a Russian…


Candidate: Renate Johanna Funke Date: November 12, 2019 Time: 12:45 pm

An advocacy initiative spearheaded by the Central Coast Alliance United for a Sustainable Economy is examined against a complex sociohistorical background, from a variety of perspectives. These include the global and local context of agriculture and their intersection in California as its residents grapple with a maze of regional, statewide, and federal policies in a…


Candidate: Anna Lang Date: November 4, 2019 Time: 10:00 am

Though once repressed into the shadow of world consciousness, the archetypal Crone is re-emerging from the depths. Instead of the stereotyped Crone, who is present in our culture as the debased image of the wicked witch, the archetypal Crone is the multi-faceted Regeneratrix who ushers in the death necessary for new life. While women at…


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…