The hermeneutic circle goes around and around…going back to Interpretation 1 (Red Interpretation)

The first layer of my interpretive stages that I blogged an age ago, was formulated two years ago, then revisited last year and began to be actively used in my interpretive work. Being guided by a hermeneutic circle means that what individual experiences I’ve had of working with your stories then informs my overall understanding of that layer. Here are some thoughts on the first interpretation’s refinement having now used it extensively and had feedback from my supervisors on its effectiveness from my supervisors.

Interpretation 1 – Emotive-Responsive:

– visceral and highly-personalised reaction to reading the stories – so far, yes, this has occurred, though it’s quite challenging and rather scary some of the things that are being highlighted. I will blog about some of these separately.

– subjective responses and the feelings that are evoked – My supervisor has told me that these are not coming out enough. I need to go back through, as another pass, and look at the feelings that are evoked.

– any automatic thoughts – I feel these are coming through in my interpretation, even though I am not currently identifying them separately but see below.

– ‘rubberbands’ (Stewart and Joines, 2005) – again, I think these are being felt, experienced and recorded, indeed much of the first layer of interpretation has taken its toll emotionally and made it hard to engage in because of the sheer level and intensity of the pulling back to my own experiences of some of the difficulties you have been sharing with me about your own lives.

– how I perceive that these may influence further interpretation – Gillian (my supervisor) has pointed out that this is another element of the layer that is lacking or not completely engaged with. this is certainly problematic as the next interpretive stage is the empathic interpretation but so far there’s little bridging between them. how are my rubberbands, feelings and automatic thoughts affecting my ability to tune into the story empathically? I need to capture a response to this and also glean the connections between the two layers for each story with more detail.

What is the case here is that this interpretation is all about me, it’s innately self-centred and is about my experiences, my resonances and my experience of what your story means in my life.