Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Closed Access

Degree Name

MS in Dance/Movement Therapy

First Advisor

Elise Risher


Transitional grief in its simplest form is growing pains. It is the grief and loss of growing up, the grief that accompanies everyday life and the varying goodbyes that an individual faces day-to-day. It is the realization that yesterday has passed and with it the moments it was made of. For many looking back on these moments of transition, nostalgia arises. Nostalgia, defined by the characteristics of bittersweetness, and longing for the past, supports an individual’s narrative identity, as it can be instrumental in grounding and establishing benchmarks to measure individual development. Just as nostalgia is informed by an individual's past, embodied memory is gathered and stored through lived experiences. Dance/movement therapy can offer individuals experiencing transitional grief the opportunity to use the symptoms of their nostalgia and grief that have been absorbed into their embodied memory to inform treatment. It would give individuals the space to use pieces of their life experiences to foster and strengthen an authentic, holistic, and autonomous creation of self-identity.

Under author imposed embargo.
Available for download on Thursday, May 01, 2025