I really didn’t think I was going to enjoy DD307, but I am making good progress with it so far. I have a draft TMA01 essay (which is not due in until 2nd March). I’ve finished my notes on families this afternoon and earlier on in the week I read through the chapter on emotion for the first time.
The chapter on families majors on two of the critical approaches. The discursive approach is positioned using discussions on singleness and how the domestic division of labour between the sexes is achieved. The social psychoanalytic approach is introduced by looking at the role of siblings and the impact of wider social and cultural influences in the formation of our identities.
Much as I’m sceptical about the social psychoanalytical perspective, I am hugely attracted by Wendy Hollway’s notion that it is “investment” rather than “choice” which explains the contradictions and complexities found in the subject positions we take up.
In other words, some of the social discourses we could apparently “choose” from are in reality (I need to be careful about using that word!!) unavailable to us because our unconscious defence mechanisms kick in to limit our choices. These unconscious mechanisms have been built up through the close (parental and sibling) relationships we have, which are in turn impacted by social factors including our cultural, historical and physical location.
I’m still of the view that the discursive perspective is more useful, as it doesn’t appear to rely on anything quite so speculative as unconscious processes, which by their very nature are unknowable. I think I’ve backed down a little from the view I expressed in a tweet I sent a few days ago that the social psychoanalytic perspective was no better than astrology!
SD226 is a different matter. I’ve still not really started looking properly at the course materials, although I have printed off the first TMA, which seems to based largely on book 1 (and a discussion on plagiarism). I think the way I’m going to tackle the first part of this course will be to strategically read book 1 with just the TMA in mind.
At the moment, I really wish I didn’t have to do SD226 as part of my degree. But DD307 is fun!