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Fractals for an ethnography of time and addiction: Recursive and self-similar temporalities in heroin and poly-substance use

Roe, Laura; Dobroski, Sonja; Manley, Gabriela; Warner, Holly; Dritschel, Heidi; Baldacchino, Alexander Mario

Fractals for an ethnography of time and addiction: Recursive and self-similar temporalities in heroin and poly-substance use Thumbnail


Authors

Laura Roe

Sonja Dobroski

Holly Warner

Heidi Dritschel

Alexander Mario Baldacchino



Abstract

Drawing on both mathematical and anthropological understandings of fractality, this paper explores alternative perspectives of time as it relates to heroin addiction and poly-substance use in Scotland. The paper ethnographically illustrates temporalities which confound typical conceptualizations of linearity, and which can be better understood as fractal. Senses of linear time are disrupted for people who use heroin through intensive poly-substance use, an increasing trend in Scotland, as both time and memory become fragmented beyond coherence or re-assemblage. Distortedness and complexity being common descriptors applied to mathematical fractals, time shattered into uncountable and un-interpretable fragments similarly connotes fracture, dissonance, and distortion. A meaningful engagement with fractal theory contains the potential to open up new vocabulary, imagery, and theoretical avenues with which to grasp complex and non-linear time experience. The aims of the paper are, therefore, twofold; to both provide a nuanced ethnographic exploration of substance use time, and to develop a reflexive analytical framework for temporal experience through fractals.

Citation

Roe, L., Dobroski, S., Manley, G., Warner, H., Dritschel, H., & Baldacchino, A. M. (2023). Fractals for an ethnography of time and addiction: Recursive and self-similar temporalities in heroin and poly-substance use. Frontiers in Psychiatry, 14, Article 1116142. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyt.2023.1116142

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jan 16, 2023
Online Publication Date Feb 2, 2023
Publication Date 2023
Deposit Date May 31, 2023
Publicly Available Date Jun 6, 2023
Journal Frontiers in Psychiatry
Publisher Frontiers Media
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 14
Article Number 1116142
DOI https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyt.2023.1116142

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http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Copyright Statement
This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.






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