in English
The Puzzle of the Psyche: Therapeutic Knowledge and Selfhood in a Comparative Perspective (TheraSelf)
This project investigates therapeutic technologies in Finland, Russia, the United States and Great Britain. Although therapeutic technologies increasingly pervade our societies, and crucially shape our subjectivities, everyday lives and frames of perception, we still know little of their effects, functions and meanings. By therapeutic technologies we mean regimes of knowledge and practice which aim to transform our relationships with ourselves (our bodies, personality, emotions, sexuality, etc.) and shape the ways in which we make sense of ourselves and the social world. The project employs therapeutic technologies as a lens to make sense of and theorise modes of governance, subjectivity, power and inequality in the contemporary world.
Bringing together sociologists, anthropologists and cultural analysts, it sheds new theoretical and empirical light on therapeutic technologies by addressing the following research questions:
.       What kinds of commonalities and differences can we detect in therapeutic technologies in Finland, Great Britain, Russia and the United States?
.       How do people engage with therapeutic technologies, and how does this engagement shape their subjectivities and everyday lives?
.       With what kind of governing projects are therapeutic technologies linked, and what kinds of meanings and forms of politics do these technologies put forward?
.       What kinds of 'regimes of the self' can we identify in therapeutic technologies?
.       How do therapeutic technologies articulate gendered, classed and racialised relationships of power?
The project is funded by Kone Foundation. It is led by Prof. Suvi Salmenniemi and located in the Department of Social Research at the University of Turku.