Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Holistic Health Studies


Holistic Health

First Advisor

Carol Geisler


Holistic Health Studies


Body dissatisfaction among women is prevalent, affecting many facets of life and presenting few effective healing interventions for changing one’s body perception. In the qualitative contexts of the critical paradigm and an intuitive culture of inquiry, we used A/R/Tography with the four researchers also acting as participants. To describe how creative expression may change a woman’s deeply held perception of her body, we conducted and participated in a retreat focused on personal narratives, reflective journaling, storytelling, and individual creativity. Through the application of thematic analysis, we identified themes of community, exhaustion, hope, and insight. Results of this research suggest the potential for positive transformation in female body image perception by engaging in creative expression. Thus, women should be encouraged and empowered to participate in community-based events involving creative expression and storytelling as a modality for healing.