Denitsa Nencheva
I propose in this part of the project to pay attention to another aspect of social suffering – the suffering of the patient. In this case, my main focus, due to previous concerns with the subject, as well as personal motivation, is directed at a specific disease – cancer (and more specifically breast cancer). Diseases of this type leave a striking impression on the individual, reflecting both their own understanding of identity and their relationship with intimate surroundings and their position in the society. The timing of such a diagnosis can undoubtedly lead to fractalisation of the identity and the loss of biographical illusio. In the place of one (Who) identity comes a new, undesirable (What (?)) Identity – that of the patient with whom the individual has to cope in some way (in order to successfully self-inherit herself). Not only the illness, but the prolonged and severe treatment leave their mark on the patient’s personality – suffering, which is not only physical but also emotional; a suffering that can be read in the body’s dispositions of the patient and also leaving visible traces on her body that can be seen by the others. This status is confirmed by a number of institutions – she is categorized as an invalid, retired, even reduced to the organ of her illness, etc. – something that enhances the positional suffering of the individual. On the other hand, even the successful treatment does not fully return the “normal” state of personality. Here the boundary between health and disease remains uncertain. It seems as if the individual, though healed at the moment, will never be completely healthy, she becomes (remains) potentially ill; she is someone that has overcome the disease; someone who was sick, and so on. Such (self) determination leaves its echo on the identity of the subject as a past, present, and future are refracted through the prism of the disease. Along with already established tools (such as meetings with a psychologist, formal and informal support groups, etc.), the socioanalysis, as a pre-clinical practice, could play an important role in the attempts for successful self-inheritance of those suffering.