Dissertation Oral Defenses


Candidate: Jaffa Vernon Frank Date: June 8, 2017 Time: 3:30 pm

This dissertation explores links between stories and well-being or dis-ease. Focusing on the symbolic meaning of the experience of endometriosis, the project develops a mythopoesis of feminine creative and destructive power as expressed through the mythology of Medusa and the text of an afflicted body. The study employs a hermeneutic phenomenology—an interpretation of experience validating…


Candidate: Elizabeth Selena Zinda Date: June 6, 2017 Time: 12:45 pm

Dogs categorized as pit bulls are entangled with American sociocultural and psychological dynamics, and alternately imagined as noble, vicious, and sweet.  Depth psychology holds that untended unconscious dynamics overwhelm situations and manifest in undesired ways such as violence and oppression.  This research explored the unconscious dynamics in pit bull phenomena and asked whether archetypal understandings…


Candidate: Jeffrey D. Barboa Date: June 6, 2017 Time: 10:00 am

This dissertation explored the direct experience of those diagnosed with schizophrenia who had received treatment through the Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) model. Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) was the method utilized, and five participants, aged 18-65, were interviewed who were treated in the ACT model.  Five general themes emerged from the data: change process, personal meaning,…


Candidate: Virginia Subia Belton Date: June 5, 2017 Time: 12:45 pm

This exploratory research conceived as ceremony makes an effort to rupture dominant narratives oppressing our exploration and meaning making of the universal lived experience that is called death.  In modern society, hegemony, commodification of the sacred, and the medicalization of an otherwise organic human unfolding contribute to the perception of a false separation in our…


Candidate: Ericka E. Hofmeyer Date: June 3, 2017 Time: 4:30 pm

This study utilizes interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) and derives meaning from the lived experiences of 5 alcoholic women with over 20 years sober from alcohol and attending Alcoholics Anonymous. Semi-structured interview questions are coded to expose themes detailing early childhood experiences, consequences related to drinking, the sense of self, and the search for wholeness. A…


Candidate: Kim Rebecca Leverett Date: June 1, 2017 Time: 2:00 pm

Childhood sexual assault impacts individuals in the most intimate of ways and is considered one of the most destructive forms of trauma an individual can endure. Clinicians and researchers alike have acknowledged a range of physical, psychobiological, and spiritual outcomes related to childhood sexual abuse. Spiritually, sexual abuse can be so annihilating it has been…


Candidate: Oreet Rees Date: May 13, 2017 Time: 12:30 pm

The sleep paralysis nightmare is universally reported across cultures, from antiquity to modernity. Those who experience nocturnal assaults by demons, succubae, hags, and dark entities attribute them to evil spirits with various degrees of malevolence. Most report the experience as terrifying, overwhelming, mysterious and uncanny. Known in the neurocognitive literature as “isolated sleep paralysis” (ISP),…


Candidate: Jeffrey Robert Lauterbach Date: May 11, 2017 Time: 10:00 am

This dissertation employs a hermeneutic methodology and a Jungian lens to examine the idea of golf as occupying liminal space. In anthropology, liminality is the transformative space in rites of initiation. In depth psychology psychic transformation occurs in liminal space. This study extends the concept to five loci of liminality: geography, history, the evolution of…


Candidate: James L. Seger Date: May 10, 2017 Time: 4:30 pm

This critical hermeneutic case study of the Occupy movement and Occupy Portland considers indicators of cultural change and new social imaginary significations through the lenses of bodily relations to place and depth psychology’s psychoanalytic tradition. In Occupy, the convening power of mass self-communication technologies allowed the substitution of organizing properties of place for organizational capital…


Candidate: V. Anne Compagna-Doll Date: April 27, 2017 Time: 4:00 pm

This dissertation utilizes the archetypal and symbolic image of the Crone as a way to imagine and integrate present-day depth psychotherapy as a model for the treatment of stuck-ness. The Greek myth of Demeter is used as a mythical and archetypal background to explore the inclusion of the analytic third (Ogden, 1985, 1994, 2010) as…