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We sampled individual growth rings from three ancient remnant bald cypress (Taxodium distichum) trees from a massive buried deposit at the mouth of the Altamaha River on the Georgia Coast to determine the best technique for radiocarbon (14C) dating pretreatment. The results of our comparison of traditional ABA pretreatment and holocellulose and α-cellulose fractions show no significant differences among the pretreatments (<1 sigma) thereby suggesting that ABA pretreatment will prove sufficient for the development of a high-resolution 14C tree-ring chronology based on these ancient bald cypresses which will indicate whether the U.S. Southeast is subject to a regional radiocarbon offset.
We trained local public health workers on disaster recovery roles and responsibilities by using a novel curriculum based on a threat and efficacy framework and a training-of-trainers approach. This study used qualitative data to assess changes in perceptions of efficacy toward Hurricane Sandy recovery and willingness to participate in future disaster recoveries.
Purposive and snowball sampling were used to select trainers and trainees from participating local public health departments in jurisdictions impacted by Hurricane Sandy in October 2012. Two focus groups totaling 29 local public health workers were held in April and May of 2015. Focus group participants discussed the content and quality of the curriculum, training logistics, and their willingness to engage in future disaster recovery efforts.
The training curriculum improved participants’ understanding of and confidence in their disaster recovery work and related roles within their agencies (self-efficacy); increased their individual- and agency-level sense of role-importance in disaster recovery (response-efficacy); and enhanced their sense of their agencies’ effective functioning in disaster recovery. Participants suggested further training customization and inclusion of other recovery agencies.
Threat- and efficacy-based disaster recovery trainings show potential to increase public health workers’ sense of efficacy and willingness to participate in recovery efforts. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2016;10:615–622)
To examine the use of vitamin D supplements during infancy among the participants in an international infant feeding trial.
Information about vitamin D supplementation was collected through a validated FFQ at the age of 2 weeks and monthly between the ages of 1 month and 6 months.
Infants (n 2159) with a biological family member affected by type 1 diabetes and with increased human leucocyte antigen-conferred susceptibility to type 1 diabetes from twelve European countries, the USA, Canada and Australia.
Daily use of vitamin D supplements was common during the first 6 months of life in Northern and Central Europe (>80 % of the infants), with somewhat lower rates observed in Southern Europe (>60 %). In Canada, vitamin D supplementation was more common among exclusively breast-fed than other infants (e.g. 71 % v. 44 % at 6 months of age). Less than 2 % of infants in the USA and Australia received any vitamin D supplementation. Higher gestational age, older maternal age and longer maternal education were study-wide associated with greater use of vitamin D supplements.
Most of the infants received vitamin D supplements during the first 6 months of life in the European countries, whereas in Canada only half and in the USA and Australia very few were given supplementation.
The next five chapters explore topics meant to be of interest to the research psychologist and the clinical practitioner. They deal with events and phenomena concerning our interactions with other people, our experiences of a self that falls apart, and our provisional understandings of mortality and death. Although only one of these topics uniquely emphasizes pathological concerns, all are potentially significant for such concerns. For this reason, the topics explored in Part III have been contextualized not only in terms of their locations within philosophy, religion, and psychology but also in terms of clinical theory and practice. Each topic, however, derives from the world of everyday life, and it is this location that ultimately will determine whether present descriptions are capable of providing a useful experiential basis on which to develop relevant clinical interventions.
Each of the following chapters, therefore, is based on the assumption of a comprehensible relationship between everyday human experience and the technique and practice of psychotherapy. In its own way, each chapter seeks to fulfill Merleau-Ponty's suggestion that the world of abstract thought and technique must be contextualized in terms of everyday life so as to recapture the living meaning of our techniques and our concepts. Each chapter describes thematic meanings for such human events as feeling alone, making amends, being in love, falling apart, and developing a personal meaning for the idea and reality of death. Although some of these phenomena occur frequently, and others only once, all have their place in the unfolding narrative that characterizes what we mean by the term human life.
Could there possibly be such a thing as an empirical existential-phenomenological psychology? Aside from the articulatory problems such a linguistic mouthful might cause, this approach would also seem to require contemporary psychology to give up, or at least strongly modify, certain long-held beliefs and practices. For one, there is the issue of content: No longer could psychology be described as the disciplined study of behavior; it would now have to become the disciplined study of behavior and experience or, even more radically, experience and behavior. Second, there is the issue of method: No longer would a quantitative evaluation of disinterested observation in special situations be criterial; now a new and more qualitative emphasis would be placed on dialogue, narrative, and interpretation as these affect descriptions of the extralaboratory worlds of everyday life. Finally, there is the issue of biology: An existential-phenomenological psychology deriving from Merleau-Ponty would, of necessity, have to reconfigure the significance of biological fact and theory for psychology. As such, it would seem to call into question all contemporary attempts at what is usually termed reductionism.
Although it is possible to view each of these considerations as asking psychology to give up something it now holds dear, a more productive way of thinking about the relationship between existential phenomenology and contemporary psychology is in terms of a series of issues to be confronted rather than a set of injunctions to be followed. If such a turn is taken, four questions emerge of significance for any dialogue between contemporary psychology and existential phenomenology.
At first glance, reparation might seem an unusual topic for psychology to consider since the verb to repair occurs most often not in the world of interpersonal relations but in the realm of things that break or no longer work. But people also break; they have broken hearts and broken lives, and they, too, seek ways to put the pieces of their lives and hearts back together again. To be human is to have difficulties in interpersonal relationships and, sometimes, to have relationships that break apart. We all know what it is to go about the work of “making up”; if the stakes are high enough or the rupture severe enough, we may even seek professional help to assist us in repairing a broken relationship or marriage.
Despite an initial impression to the contrary, we do talk about fixing interpersonal relationships in somewhat the same way as we talk about fixing broken vases and automobiles. Images of wholeness and perfection are among the most elementary prototypes of human consciousness, and a family of metaphors has grown up to describe experiences of this type. Consider, for example, how we speak of some event or object as complete or incomplete: A chef may taste a sauce and determine that “it needs something”; an individual grieving the death of a loved one may describe his or her experience as “feeling incomplete.” In both cases, the present state of lack or incompleteness is experienced against a ground of wholeness or perfection.
A different metaphor for perfection refers to a concern with balance.
The purpose of The Phenomenology of Everyday Life is to describe an alternative approach to the psychological study of everyday human activities and experiences. This approach is grounded in the philosophical traditions of existentialism and phenomenology and employs dialogue as its major method of inquiry. The reasons for these choices are not arbitrary: Both derive from the view that a proper study of human events must be framed in terms of a philosophy explicitly developed to encompass human activities. In addition, such events must be investigated on the basis of a method sensitive enough to articulate the nuances of human experience and reflection. It is important to point out, in this latter regard, that insights deriving from literature and the humanities are equally revealing of the human world as those deriving from experimental psychology, biology, or medicine. Language, whether in dialogue or drama, is never beside the point in human life.
As we hope subsequent chapters will demonstrate, our purpose is not to replace scientific observation with humanistic analysis but to provide an additional perspective on significant human questions. If we are to be successful in interesting colleagues in this endeavor, the work must be both relevant and rigorous: relevant to the everyday concerns of human existence and rigorous enough to pass critical evaluation by colleagues more comfortable with regression equations than thematic analysis. Thus the challenge is twofold: (1) to suggest new topics for research that will be recognized as significant by the empirical researcher as well as the clinical practitioner; and (2) to describe our procedures with sufficient clarity and precision to allow for public scrutiny of their utility and rigor.
The Phenomenology of Everyday Life presents results from a rigorous qualitative approach to the psychological study of everyday human activities and experiences. This book does not replace scientific observation with humanistic analysis, but provides an additional perspective on significant human questions. The qualitative approach this book employs is grounded in the philosophical traditions of existentialism and phenomenology, which use dialogue as their major method of inquiry. These traditions are especially well adapted to encompass and describe human events and activities. In addition, such events can be properly investigated only on the basis of a method sensitive enough to articulate the nuances of human experience and reflection. In this latter regard, it is important to note that insights deriving from literature and the humanities are equally revealing of the human world as those from experimental psychology, biology or medicine.
For psychology, few questions are as fundamental as those of how we stand in relation to others of our kind. Independent of the type of psychology in which we engage, or the theoretical tradition we reflect, an account of how we experience other people needs to be given. The primacy of our experiences with other people was well noted by William James (1890) when he wrote:
We are not only gregarious animals, liking to be in sight of our fellows, but we have an innate propensity to get ourselves noticed, and noticed favorably, by our kind. No more fiendish punishment could be devised, were such a thing physically possible, than that one should be turned loose in a society and remain absolutely unnoticed by all the members thereof. If no one turned round when we entered, answered when we spoke, or minded what we did, but if every person we met “cut us dead”, and acted as if we were nonexisting things, a kind of rage and impotent despair would ere long well up in us, from which the cruellest bodily tortures would be relief.
From Allport to Zimbardo, each of social psychology's major practitioners may be viewed as attempting to deal with some aspect of other people and their effects on the individual. Attribution, attraction, and person perception are but a few of the subtopics emerging from social psychology to focus attention on specific aspects of this question.
The attempt to understand the experience and effects of the other on the self is not a question unique to social psychology.