The Narrative Arc of Tragic Loss: Grief and the Reconstruction of Meaning

  • Robert A. Neimeyer, PhD University of Memphis

Abstract




In the face of a tragic transition associated with significant loss, our normally implicit ability to make sense of life experiences can be profoundly challenged, precipitating a painfully explicit search for meaning. Here I summarize our long and multifaceted research program on this process, organizing findings into those that bear on the narrative arc of meaning reconstruction in bereavement, beginning with shattering of the survivor’s life story, through its restorative retelling, reconstruction and integration. In doing so, I underscore the spiritual as well as secular struggles in meaning-making, the role of sense making and benefit finding in predicting more hopeful outcomes in bereavement, and the prospects for loss to usher in eventual gain in the form of posttraumatic growth.


Published
Nov 29, 2016
How to Cite
NEIMEYER, Robert A.. The Narrative Arc of Tragic Loss: Grief and the Reconstruction of Meaning. International Journal of Existential Positive Psychology, [S.l.], v. 5, n. 1, p. 6, nov. 2016. ISSN 1708-1696. Available at: <http://journal.existentialpsychology.org/index.php/ExPsy/article/view/199>. Date accessed: 21 sep. 2019.