The blog reviewed here is ‘FABLE‘ an acronym for ‘Fictional Autobiography of Life Experience’. I first came across the blog via the author Cole Bitting’s Twitter profile after exchanging a few messages with him on Twitter. So here are the results of my look at the blog….
Appearance and Design
The title pane consists of the blog title with an effective shadow effect on a woody background. The main background is a slightly off-black colour (i’m not particularly good at naming some of these subtle shades of colouring!) with white text. Individual articles are demarcated by a white dotted line at the end of each post. The reader can navigate by selecting the page numbers at the very bottom of the page. On the left hand side there is a link to a descriptions of songs that Bitting refers to in the text. There is an About section in the title pane and on the left hand pane there are links to an RSS feed as well as links to Web 2.0 resources such as Twitter. There are also occasional images that complement the text.
The first article is dated 28th September 2009. In this first article, Bitting tells us about fables and our relationship with them. Within this first article Bitting also tells us of the high regard in which he holds Damasio’s work ‘The feeling of what happens. Body, emotion and the making of consciousness’. I, like many people have found Damasio’s writing accessible and extremely interesting and used this in the foundations for the building of a model of the role of the Insular Cortex in emotional regulation as Damasio’s work has influenced people such as Craig in his development of a model of the Insular cortex (see here). In the second article, which is philosophical in nature, Bitting produces one of the statements which will feature again in the blog – the distinction between what is useful and what is truthful. As I understand it, Bitting is arguing that when a narrative is formed does not necessarily represent an underlying truth but instead relates to utility. In this ‘Perspective: Objectify Yourself, Witness Life’ article, Bitting discusses some foundations for the neurobiology of first person perspective and what I found really interesting here was his use of triangle and inverted triangle symbols for concepts creating an effective symbolic shorthand. In ‘Open Up, Confront the Fury’, parts 1 and 2 (of a 3-part essay – with the final part not published at the time of writing) Bitting looks at how writing can be an effective means for confronting and managing disturbing emotions (in psychodynamic terms this is equivalent to sublimation). However this is quite thematic in Bitting’s writing.
If I were to summarise Bitting’s writing, I would characterise an underlying theme of exploring the neurobiology of narrative therapy using Damasio’s works as a foundation for this process. However, Bitting himself has an elegant style of writing with emotional depth and so the reader is able to enjoy his writing on another level while exploring what is a fascinating area of inquiry.
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