This present study utilized a mixed methods design to explore the inner emotional experiencing of John F. Kennedy Jr. during the last five years of his life. A large first-person data set culled from JFK Jr.’s letters and interviews was subjected to a qualitative theme analysis and the quantitative Linguistic Inquiry Word Count (LIWC) program (Pennebaker, Boyd, Jordan, & Blackburn, 2015). Among the major themes emerging from the qualitative analysis were JFK Jr.’s efforts to balance and integrate his public and private selves; navigating the Kennedy legacy and understanding his family’s place in political history; and establishing George magazine with a goal of connecting politics to the general public. The LIWC analysis provided evidence of a highly logical critical thinker who generally carried himself with confidence and who was able to successfully adapt his tone to the needs of different contexts. It also found significant increases in word usage related to analytical thinking, anxiety, sadness, and death across two time periods. Collectively the data suggested that at the time of his death, JFK Jr. was in a period of contemplation, in which he sought to determine whether it was possible to balance a public and private life.
John F. Kennedy, Jr., Psychobiography, Case Study, Mixed Methods, Linguistic Analysis, Politics, George Magazine
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Recommended APA Citation
Ferrer, C. R., & Ponterotto, J. G. (2020). Exploring the Final Years of the Life of John F. Kennedy Jr.: A Mixed Methods Psychobiographical Case Study. The Qualitative Report, 25(10), 3583-3601. https://doi.org/10.46743/2160-3715/2020.4504