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Antwone Fisher Presentation

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Allison Harvey

on 2 April 2014

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Transcript of Antwone Fisher Presentation

By Sam Barandes, Allison Harvey,
and Nicolette Pirozzi Antwone Fisher
A Case Study of Childhood Abuse Movie Summary Intrapersonal Interactions Antwone is a young male just enlisted in the Navy

After exhibiting anger management problems, Antwone seeks the help of a therapist, Dr. Davenport

Antwone discloses how he was physically, verbally, and sexually abused as a child by his foster family

In order to reconcile with his past, Antwone must find his birth family Historical Context of Sexual Abuse In the Middle Ages, dissociative states were treated as signs of demonic possession to be "cured" by exorcism or death (Herman, 1992).

In the early 20th Century, with the birth of psychology during the Freudian psychoanalytic revolution, hysteria patients who expressed memories of sexual abuse were told by the psychoanalytic community that these "memories" were fabrications of the mind. For treatment, patients would resolve sexual conflicts with their parents. (Davies & Frawley, 1992).

Sexual abuse had yet to be acknowledged as anything but a fantasy produced by the brain to express unresolved sexual tensions within the parent-child relationship (Davies & Frawley, 1992). Interpersonal Interactions Cultural and Societal Impact Predictions: Summary of the Trauma References Bonanno G. A. (2005). Resilience in the face of potential trauma. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 14(3), 135-138.

Browne A., & Finkelhor D. (1986). Impact of child sexual abuse: A review of the research. Psychological Bulletin, 99(1), 66-77.

Cherry, K. (2013). Erikson's theory of psychosocial development . Retrieved from http://psychology.about.com/od/psychosocialtheories/a/psychosocial.htm

Davies J. M. & Frawley M. G. (1992). Dissociative processes and transference‐ countertransference paradigms in the psychoanalytically oriented treatment of adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse. Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 2(1), 5-36

Herman, J. (1992). Child Abuse, In Herman J. Trauma and Recovery, The Aftermath of Violence- From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror (pp 96-114). Basic Books.

Kenny, M.C., & McEachern, A.G. (2000). Racial, Ethnic, and Cultural Factors of Childhood Sexual Abuse: A Selected Review of the Literature. Clinical Psychology Review, 20(7), 905-922

Pearson G. H. J. (1949). Emotional disorders of children: A case book of childpsychiatry. New York, NY: W.W. Norton & Company, Inc.

Sorsoli L., Grossman, F.K., & Kia-Keating M., (2008). “I Keep That Hush-Hush”: Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse and the Challenges of Disclosure. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 55(3), 333-345.

Pereda N., Guilera G., Forns M., Gómez-Benito J. (2009). The prevalence of child sexual abuse in community and student samples: a meta-analysis. Clinical Psychology Review, 27(1), 328-338.

Wayment H. A., Vierthaler J. (2002). Attachment style and bereavement reactions. Journal of Loss and Trauma, 7(1), 129-149.
Sexual & physical abuse: Vulnerable to extreme changes of intimacy with partner, dependency in relationship, sensitive to invasion of privacy (Herman, 1992). Ability to establish a relationship with Cheryl was very positive.

Abandonment: Sensitive to rejection, must be secure with new family and lover (Herman, 1992). Must be prepared to handle normalcy of breakups.

Death of Friend: Difficulty with trust, anger, confidence in others (Wayment & Vierthaler, 2002). Needs social support from friends; could use group therapy. •In terms of the film Antwone Fisher, Antwone’s interpersonal analysis becomes most apparent when he is in a close proximity with other individuals (Sorsoli, Grossman, & Kia-Keating, 2008).

•Antwone’s story, which aided by flashbacks, reveals a horrific physically, emotionally, and sexually abusive childhood.

•Often struggling with issues such as aggression, alienation, and intimacy; the film captures Antwone’s interpersonal hardships. Interpersonal Analysis Aggression •Within the first few scenes of the film, Antwone’s aggression and attitude towards others is established.

•Particularly, this is seen when Antwone throws a punch at a provoking crew mate.

•Antwone’s excessive rage and aggressive behavior nearly gets him kicked out of the Navy.

•His aggression is seen as a clear indication that he is unstable and has difficulty handling conflicts with others (Sorsoli, Grossman, & Kia-Keating, 2008).

•According to the article “I Keep That Hush-Hush,” behavior like Antwone’s is common in abused boys and they are significantly more likely to exhibit problem behaviors, including aggressiveness (Sorsoli, Grossman, & Kia-Keating, 2008). Interpersonal Analysis Alienation •As a result of being subjected to such aberrant physical and sexual abuse at a young age, Antwone tends to alienate himself from others.
•Antwone had difficulty approaching or articulating thoughts and emotions (Sorsoli, Grossman, & Kia-Keating, 2008).
•According to the article “I Keep That Hush-Hush,” Antwone uses alienation as a form of intentional avoidance (Sorsoli, Grossman, & Kia-Keating, 2008).
•Specifically, this can be seen in the film when Antwone’s bunkmates were discussing going home and Antwone kept to himself with his headphones on.
•Antwone is deliberately demonstrating his attitude towards socializing.
•By alienating himself, Antwone is disconnecting from the “here and now” and focusing on what is on his mind. Interpersonal Analysis Intimacy •According to the article “I Keep That Hush-Hush,” the authors discuss the fact that men like Antwone struggle with intimacy because they have trouble not just in expressing, but in identifying their feelings (Sorsoli, Grossman, & Kia-Keating, 2008).
•The article also addresses the fact that men like Antwone experience feelings of isolation when it comes time for intimacy (Sorsoli, Grossman, & Kia-Keating, 2008).
•Directly seen in the film, Antwone begins seeing a woman named Cheryl. In the beginning of their relationship, Antwone had difficulty interacting with her. However, Cheryl immediately becomes his emotional crutch although he is unable to tell her right away.
•Cheryl encourages and supports Antwone in his efforts to overcome his anger and fear.
•Antwone’s relationship with Cheryl helps pacify his hunger for the thing he misses most from his past: a family. •In regard to the cultural and social context of the film Antwone Fisher, the subject of Antwone’s African-American descent comes up multiple times throughout the film.
•Antwone was subjected to a considerably unusual kind of culture. The African-American family who raised him believed in diverse child-rearing and disciplinary practices, and had different definitions ascribed to maltreatment.
•In terms of Antwone Fisher and his African-American background, the article “Racial, Ethnic, and Cultural Factors of Childhood Sexual Abuse” states that cultural issues are relevant to child sexual abuse in three major ways: how cultural beliefs or attitudes contribute to family climates in which children can be abused; how cultural organization prohibits or hinders disclosure; and how culture plays a role in seeking or accepting help from others (Kenny & McEachern, 2000). Cultural and Societal Impact •Antwone felt he was never good enough due to his dark complexion and his cultural and social background.

•Seen in the film, Antwone explains to Cheryl about what he witnessed about parent’s adoption preferences from being in the orphanage.

•He explains that first the light-skinned girls were adopted, followed by the light-skinned boys, then the dark-skinned girls, and last but not least, the dark-skinned boys.

•Specifically seen in the film when Mrs. Tate points out that Antwone’s foster brother Keith is superior to him due to having a white man for a father and being lighter-skinned, Antwone learns at an early age that his culture is something he will always carry around with him. Rage Antwone’s rage was clearly indicated when he got angry with Dr. Davenport for being put in therapy sessions.
Anger was also expressed by Antwone’s mannerisms and facial expressions before he would get into a fight with his fellow crew members. For instance, if you pay careful attention to Antwone’s facial expressions and mannerisms before his fights, you can almost feel the rage within him.
Rage is considered to be a common emotion that goes along with sexual and physical abuse. This is particularly common in children since they may not know how to express emotions otherwise (Herman, 1992). Rejection This is illustrated during one of Antwone’s first therapy sessions when Dr. Davenport asks where Antwone comes from. Antwone’s response is “under a rock”, which clearly indicates the sense of rejection he feels from his family and home. Intrapersonal Interactions Self-Esteem While low self-esteem was not outwardly shown in the film, it can be deduced as being one of the feelings Antwone had to deal with.
Instances where low self-esteem could have occurred would be when Antwone would be degraded by Mrs. Tate and be called derogatory names rather than his actual name.
Antwone also was referred to as “retarded” by Mrs. Tate which would also lower his self-esteem. Hypervigiliance Hypervigilance was discussed in Herman (1992) as being a way that children can help themselves scan for signs of an attack. Herman (1992) described this as being when a child may develop an astute sense of his or her surroundings in order to prepare for the following abuse.
Antwone showed signs of this when he describes the smell of breakfast in the morning as being a clue as to if he would have a day with many beatings.
The fine cues that Antwone picked up on, were signs intrapersonally that he was traumatized. A child who has not been abused would not tend to notice these things. Intrapersonal Interactions Dissociation Dissociative states are used to help remove a child from an abusive situation and to temporarily forget about the abuse for a short period of time (Herman, 1992).
Antwone demonstrated this at the beginning of the movie when he sees himself at a large table filled with food and family members.
Dissociation as an intrapersonal defense mechanism helps young children make sense of and cope with their abuse (Herman, 1992). Guilt and Trust Guilt and trust difficulties are also to be expected from Antwone. Being abused as a young child leads for many questions for the child to grapple with such as who was responsible for the abuse and if the child brought the abuse upon themselves.
Antwone is likely to experience self-blame and guilt for the abuse he had to deal with (Herman, 1992).
This guilt is felt so the child can still believe that their parents are good and their caretaker (Herman, 1992). It is easier for a child to blame themselves than someone who is supposed to love and care for them.
Antwone may also experience trust problems since he never truly had someone who he could trust as being there for him until meeting Dr. Davenport. All his life people walked out, therefore, this could leave Antwone feeling unlikely to trust new companions. Theoretical Introduction Today, psychology recognizes that sexual abuse is a very real traumatic experience (Herman, 1992).

The definition of Child Sexual Abuse is "forced or coerced sexual behavior imposed on a child" by an abuser who is at least 5 years older than the child (Browne & Finkelhor, 1986).

The perpetrator of sexual abuse against children is most often someone close to the child, e.g. a parent, guardian, or trusted individual (Herman, 1992).

Treatment options vary depending on patient, but can involve CBT, family support, community involvement, group therapy, etc. (Davies & Frawley 1992). Prevalence of Child Sexual Abuse Global Rates of Child Sexual Abuse are approx. 7.9% of males and 19.7% of females (Pereda, et al, 2009).

Child Sexual Abuse rates in the U.S. are approx. 7.5% of males and 25.3% of females (Pereda, et al, 2009).

While the data indicates that child sexual abuse is far more common for females than males, it is theorized that the difference in child sexual abuse rates between men and women may be exaggerated due to culturally driven gender roles that lead to under-reporting caused by shame and fear of being labeled as homosexual or weak (Pereda, et al, 2009). Predictions: Categorization of Response From Antwone Fisher life story, we would conclude that he is a delayed case who has responded to treatment similarly to an individual in recovery.

Antwone's case has a multitude of traumatic experiences, each of which may lead an examiner to conclude a different categorization of response to trauma. Child sexual abuse is complex, but when isolated, manifests itself more similarly to a delayed response. (Bonanno, 2005) Prediction: Future of Antwone My prediction for Antwone is that after piecing the problems of his life together, achieving intimacy with his girlfriend Cheryl, and being united with his family, Antowne will, for the first time in his life, have the opportunity to explore an identity for himself and replace "I came from under a rock."

A possible problem in the Navy, unrelated to his anger and violent behavior, is a conflict between his energy to explore and establish his identity and the strict and confining structure of the Navy. Erikson's stages of Psychosocial Development (Cherry, 2013)
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