Hillary Keeney, Bradford Keeney, and Ronald Chenail
Recursive Frame Analysis (RFA) is a qualitative research method for mapping and analyzing change-oriented conversation. Cybernetician and therapist Bradford Keeney invented RFA over twenty years ago as a means of discerning and indicating the bare bones organization of real-time therapeutic performance. This book revisits some of Keeney’s original ideas while providing a more exhaustive theoretical foundation for RFA, a thorough exploration of its practical application as a research tool, and several detailed analyses of therapy sessions.
Rooted to Gregory Bateson’s notion of contextual frame and the way that a distinction can recursively operate on itself as formulated by G. Spencer-Brown’s Laws of Form, RFA offers both researchers and practitioners of all kinds a formal way of tracking the dramatological construction and movement of a conversation through its beginning, middle, and end episodes. By limiting the analysis to the actual performance of the conversation being studied - including spoken discourse and description of non-verbal action - RFA lays bare the primary distinctions, re-indications, and contextual frames embodied by the communication being studied, as well as those of the researcher. Commentary later generated by the researcher must be demarcated as a separate order of discourse, providing opportunity for multiple layers of analysis by researchers while keeping the primary data intact.
Though this book primarily exemplifies the application of Recursive Frame Analysis to the study of therapeutic sessions, RFA as a research tool is not limited to this domain but can be applied to the analysis of any change-oriented conversation, interaction, or even textual discourse to track the primary distinctions, recursively generated re-indications, and emergent contextual frames being constructed. It is intended that this book serve as a resource for the future application of RFA across multiple fields.
José G. Rigau-Pérez, Silvia E. Rabionet, Annette B. Ramírez de Arellano, Wilfredo A. Géigel, Alma Simounet, and Raúl Mayo-Santana
Edward Bliss Emerson (1805-1834), a younger brother of the renowned essayist and poet Ralph Waldo Emerson, lived in the Caribbean for the final three years of his life. His journal and letters are a rich manuscript source for the history of the Danish Virgin Islands (1831-1832) and Puerto Rico (1831-1834). The texts also reflect the contemporary political and cultural situation in the United States, and Edward's search for health, economic independence, intellectual stimulation and metaphysical fulfillment.
These writings ignited an intellectual passion in José G. Rigau-Pérez, a physician, medical epidemiologist, and historian in Puerto Rico. Furthering access to these unique resources he produced a digital version of the journal from the Ralph Waldo Emerson Memorial Association deposit at the Houghton Library (Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts) and the letters kept at Houghton Library, the Emerson Family Papers at Massachusetts Historical Society (Boston), and other locations. (See http://edicionesdigitales.info/biblioteca/Emerson.pdf for the full online text of the journal and letters).
Dr. José G. Rigau-Pérez also organized a community of scholars who share a sense a common purpose even in the absence of propinquity. The group includes Silvia E. Rabionet, an associate professor in health education at the University of Puerto Rico School of Public Health and Nova Southeastern University College of Pharmacy; Annette B. Ramírez de Arellano, a planner and policy analyst whose work focuses on public health; Wilfredo A. Géigel, a trial lawyer by profession, an independent scholar, member and past president of the Society of Virgin Islands Historians, and Adjunct Professor of History at the University of the Virgin Islands, St. Croix Campus; Raúl Mayo-Santana, an Ad-Honorem Professor at the School of Medicine, University of Puerto Rico; and Alma Simounet, a Professor of English and Linguistics at the University of Puerto Rico. They explore the Emerson journal and letters from multidisciplinary perspectives to bring forth historical, medical, legal, sociological, and geographical insights of the people, times, and places of the mid 1830s in the Caribbean and United States.
The work of this talented team resulted in a series of essays we at The Qualitative Report (TQR) are pleased to present as our first book -The Edward Bliss Emerson Journal Project: Qualitative Research by a Non-Hierarchical Team! Under the editorial guidance of TQR Editor Dan Wulff, Dr. Rigau-Pérez and the other members of the team have produced these unique accounts as a transdisciplinary examination of Emerson's world.