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On Reverie, Collaboration, and Recovery

Ravetz, Amanda (2019) On Reverie, Collaboration, and Recovery. Collaborative Anthropologies, 10 (1). pp. 45-66. ISSN 2152-4009


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This is a meditation on reverie and collaboration in the context of recovery: recovery from substance misuse, but also in its much broader sense, recovering the connection between thinking and feeling. It highlights tensions that can be encountered when feeling constrained by perceptions of disciplinary norms, as well as the rewards of working through thought processes in connection with visual expression. Several narrative moments of my own journey are presented, emphasizing the depth of time it can take to realize ways of becoming writers, artists, anthropologists, people. Coming to know is a long-term commitment, with previous experiences feeding into present and future collaborations. A desire to combine anthropological and artistic thinking and imagination is expressed, and images and words are brought together to ask how this desire can infuse research with and into recovery. At the heart of the essay I recount an arts and health project, Wonderland: the art of becoming human in which trust and vulnerability, together with solidarity and gratitude, helped with the digestion of experiences of addiction and recovery. Reverie and collaboration are conceptualized less as a set of techniques and more as a call to disciplines to intersect at crucial points, or, inspired by intimations of "things in themselves," to suspend categorical boundaries.

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