Nancy Nyquist Potter

 

Individual Partner: Nancy Nyquist Potter; Professor, University of Louisville; Associate with the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences; Core faculty, Interdisciplinary Masters Program in Bioethics and Medical Humanities

Networks: Whiteness and Race Equality Network

Preferred contact: nancy.potter@louisville.edu

Brief Description of Work:

I am Professor Emeritus of Philosophy and Adjunct with the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Louisville. While working at U of L, I also served as Core Faculty of the Interdisciplinary Master’s in Bioethics and Medical Humanities and an Adjunct in Women’s and Gender Studies. My current interest is what it means to listen well to others. In particular, I do research and give presentations in meanings and interplays between voice, silence, and listening well as it applies in clinical settings and with respect to patients/service users. In 2019, I held an Advanced Seminar in Oxford (see description and final programme). This topic is turning out to be a book-length project in which I start from J.L. Austin’s idea that talking is a kind of action and that some particular linguistic exchanges require that the listener give what he calls ‘uptake.’ I expand from this idea, exploring the epistemological and ethical implications of listening well and the sorts of damage that can be done when we fail. This requires as well that I analyze the concepts of voice and of different kinds of silences/silencings. I am especially concerned with ways we may do epistemic violence to service users and others when we experience colliding values and world-views. One way this can show up is when we make judgments about whose testimony is or is not epistemically credible, a challenge made more difficult when working with people who are diagnosed with (or just perceived to have) mental illnesses—whether it be in clinical encounters, peer counseling, or coproduction— based on assumptions and stereotypes of perceived racialization, class, gender, and citizenship. A recent article that begins to address some of these issues can be found here.

Key Words: Resident in: U.S.;

Working in: U.S.;

Area(s) of Interest in VBP: Meeting/ASS (Advanced Studies Seminar), Meeting/clinical education, Publications/CUP series, Research/philosophy, Research/communicative ethics, Research/voice and uptake, Research/intersections of service users, diversity, and inclusivity, Research/ intersections between race, gender, class, and culture in clinical care, Services/person-centered, Services/teamwork, Services/clinical education;

Related Area(s) of Interest: Communication skills, Ethics, Medical humanities [literature, music, film], Social determinants of mental health,

Area(s) of healthcare expertise: Mental health/General, Mental health/personality disorders; Psychiatric ethics; Bioethics

Read more:

The Virtue of Defiance and Psychiatric Engagement

Mapping the Edges and the In-Between: A Critical Analysis of Borderline Personality Disorder

Commodity/Body/Sign: Borderline Personality Disorder and the Signification of Self-Injurious Behavior

Moral tourists and world travelers: Some epistemological issues in understanding patients’ worlds

What is manipulative behavior, anyway?

Loopholes, gaps, and what is held fast: Democratic epistemology and claims to recovered memories

Blog posts:

https://www.press.jhu.edu/news/blog/asking-right-questions-autism-and-depression

http://imperfectcognitions.blogspot.com/2017/02/virtue-of-defiance.html