Visual Activity and Relatedness: A Portrait of Ways the Eye, Empathy and Ethics Conjoin

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ProQuest, 2008 - 313 pages
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Sowbel's exploratory hypothesis is that empathy, which is fundamental to relatedness and key to the development of ethical understanding and ethical action, has vital roots in visual activity. Through a heuristic, discursive, arts-informed inquiry, the question: "Is there a link between visual activity (defined as the ongoing making of internal and external conceptualizations) and ethical conduct?" is examined for significance in today's climate of reduced support for the arts. Socio-political events show that empathy across difference is critical to negotiations at the local, national and international level. This interdisciplinary study looks at links among the eye, empathy and ethics through several bodies of creative work and literature on neurons, kin recognition, pattern identification, attachment theory, empathy, perspective-taking, prosocial behavior, metaphor, the history of portraiture and the cultural stories about eyes. Creative work, included in the document, locates visual activity across theory and practice. A personal reflexive voice brings the difference in disciplinary dialects into relation across methodologies. The 40+ monoprints, 50-page manuscript of poetry: Mixing Liberties, five large scale portraits, and documentation of the work of five fictive artists displayed as an installation are used as both method and data to ground conclusions regarding the ubiquity of visual activity and its link to human processes related to prosocial behavior. This study has implications for the research, policies and practices of developmental and social psychologists, expressive arts therapists, arts-based researchers, educators and legislators.
 

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Contents

TABLE OF CONTENTS
1
Some Caveats Regarding The Research and Conceptualizations
2
INTRODUCTION
10
Personal Context of Early Conceptualizing
24
CONTEXT QUESTIONS DEFINITIONS AND LAYOUT
31
Secondary Definitions and Designations
48
Introduction to the Portrait as a Visual Conception
57
Early Portraits
59
Angels Shopping at the Crossroads Boustrophedon
120
THE IEYE + IEYE EMPATHY IN RELATION
123
An Experience of Empathy and Art
137
Portraits
155
The Radiant and Irradiated Sylvalee
159
Moral Development From A Western Vantage Point
168
Prosocial Behavior
180
Metaphor
186

Essays and Images
66
In Story
73
The Conception of The I
82
The Eye and The I In RelationConceive
90
Boustrophedon Series
99
Pocket Boustrophedon
101
Kun Window Boustrophedon
108
Cadmium Pacific Boustrophedon
110
Chapter Summary
240
Implications Regarding Word and Image
249
Analysis of this Inquirys Conceptualizations
255
1 The Inquirys Boustrophedon
257
Implications of Using the Visual Sense as The Primary Thread
261
Implications of Visual Conception as a Process
264
REFERENCES
272
Copyright

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