Picture of Ulrich Teucher

Ulrich Teucher Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Faculty Member in Psychology and Health Studies

Arts 175.2

Research Area(s)

  • Culture, Human Development, and Health
  • Sustainability, Health, and Care
  • Communicating Health and Illness
  • Knowledge Systems
  • Qualitative Research

About me

Graduate Students

Please note: I am currently not accepting graduate students

Oakes, Nathan, Doctoral Studies, "Exploring and Addressing Irritable Bowel Disease with Indigenous Men in Saskatchewan" (Department of Community, Health, and Epidemiology). 2022 - present

Reimer, Jessica, Master's Studies, "Arts-Based Research" (Department of Psychology and Health Studies). 2020 - present

Ward Wright, Ryan, Doctoral Studies, "Culture, Trauma, and Care" (Dean's Doctoral Fellowship, Department of Psychology and Health Studies), 2018 – present

Zhao, Rebecca, Master's Studies, "Art Voice: Graphic Health Narratives of Care Providers." (Department of Community, Health, and Epidemiology). 2018 - 2020 ( now doctoral studies at McGill)

Dutrisac, Shannah, PhD Transfer Program, "Mindfulness and Self-Compassion Practices in Lives with Depression." (Dean's Master's and Doctoral Fellowships, Department of Psychology and Health Studies). 2017 - present

McKinstry, Nina, Master's Studies, "Qualitative Exploration of Deliberate Self-Harm and Experiences with the Health Care System among Gays and Lesbians in Saskatchewan" (Department of Community, Health, and Epidemiology; Co-Supervision with Dr. Lilian Thorpe). 2016 - 2017.

Satizabal Parra, Katherine, Master's Studies. Congratulations to Katherine who defended her exemplary Master's Thesis, “Internal Exiles: Displaced Colombian Women’s Narratives of Crianza” on June 1st, 2016 (SSHRC, Graduate Research Scholarship, Teaching Fellowship; Department of Psychology). 2012 - 2016.

McHenry, Stacey, Doctoral Studies, "Narratives of Women living with Bipolar Disorder" (Dean's Doctoral Fellowship, Department of Psychology). Jan 2012 - present

Hammond, Chad, Doctoral Studies, “Towards existentialist cancer care: What are the meanings of “experience” and “meaning” (Dean's Master's and Doctoral Fellowships, Department of Psychology). 2008 - 2013.

Carr, Tracey, Doctoral Studies, “Exploring how surgical patients wait: Implications for quality of life” (CIHR Doctoral Fellowship, Health Sciences Program, College of Medicine). 2008 - 2013.

Andersen, Devon, Doctoral Studies, “Epilepsy and self: Metaphor in chronic illness” (CIHR-RPP Doctoral Fellowship, Department of Psychology). 2008 - 2017.

Honours Students

Hong, Meagan, BA&Sc Hons, HLST Honours Co-Supervisor, 2021-22

Olaniyi, Modupe, BA&Sc Hons, HLST Honours Supervisor, 2021-22

Bowring, Alleah, BA Psychology, BA Fine Arts Dbl- Hons; Psy Honours Supervisor, 2021-22

Stewart, Ali, BA Psychology Hons, Honours Co-Supervisor, 2021-22

Osseiran, Mohamad, BA Psychology Hons, Honours Supervisor, 2021-22

Lee, Nina, BA Psychology Hons, Honours Co-Supervisor, 2021-22

Idisi, Emanuelle, B.A., HLST Honours Co-Supervisor, 2019 - 2020 

Hooshmand, Daniel. Check your sugar: An investigation into the unique challenges faced by ethnic minorities rising diabetic children. 2018 - 2019.

Sim, Jeongeon. Don’t stop believing: College students’ experiences with psychological distress and religious, spiritual coping methods. 2018 - 2019.

Hlewka, Leanne. Disentangling love, identity, and commitment: Narratives of change and continuity in emerging adulthood. 2017 - 2018.

Miller, Miranda. Something to Hold on to: Spirituality as a Source of Identity and Stability in Young Adulthood. 2016 - 2017.

Baxter, Victoria. Size Matters: Package Size Influences Recognition of Serving Size Information. 2016 - 2017

Gaboury, Tarah. Rural Networks in Community Cancer Care, 2015 -2016. 

Berry, Jared. Final Exposure: An autoethnographic exploration of death, dying, and grief through photographic monuments, 2014 - 2015.

Kalthoff, Dustin. The entrepreneurial experience: An examination of work and life. Dept. of Psychology, 2012 - 2013.

Reese, Miriam. The trickster: Myths of ambiguity in the autobiographies of cancer patients. Dept. of Psychology, 2011 - 2012. 

Reimer, Jessica.  Perception of time in young and aging adult cancer patients' autobiographies. Dept. of Psychology, 2009 - 2010. 

Fauchoux, Laurissa. Forms of Energy: How clients and practitioners make sense of Reiki. Dept. of Psychology, 2009 - 2010. 

Bergin, April.  The experience of Irish immigrant women in Canada. Dept. of Psychology, 2007 - 2008.

Hammond, Chad. Cancer and existential concerns. Dept. of Psychology, 2007 - 2008. 

McHenry, Stacey. Children’s Developing Self-Knowledge: What is Different about Thinking and Dreaming? Dept. of Psychology, 2006 - 2007.

Yonan, Jesay. Using alternative methods in the treatment of clinical depression. Dept. of Psychology, 2006 - 2007.



HlSt  110.3  Health Studies Introductory Core Course (BA&Sc), College of Arts & Sciences/Dept. of Psychology, 2015 - present

HlSt  210.3  Health Studies Interdisciplinary Research Methods, College of Arts & Sciences/Dept. of Psychology, 2016 - present

HlSt  310.3  Health Studies Theories and Applications in Health Studies, College of Arts &Sciences/Dept of Psychology, 2016 - present

HlSt  410.3  Health Studies Honours Thesis, College of Arts &Sciences/Dept of Psychology, 2016 - present

MEDC 112.3 Medicine & Society, College of Medicine, 2015 - 2018

MEDC 105 Professional Skills: "Patient Narratives" Medical Humanities Seminars, College of Medicine, 2010 - 2018

PSY  803.3 Culture and Human Development

PSY  498.3 Mixed Methods in Cross-Cultural Health Psychology

PSY  316.3 Social and Emotional Development

PSY  214.3 Adolescence

PSY  213.3 Child Development

PSY  121.3 Developmental and Social Bases of Psychology

PSY  120.3 Biological and Cognitive Bases of Psychology

PSY  110.6 Introduction to Psychology

PSY  898.3  Narrative Psychology Advanced Human Development

PSY  898.3  Narrative in Psychology: Analyzing Narratives of Health and Illness

PSY  898.3  Narrative Psychology: Poetics of Illness Narratives

PSY  898.3  Advanced Culture and Human Development

PSY   492.3  Children's Cancer Narratives

ENG   304.6 Advanced Composition

ENG   301.3 Technical Writing (4x)

ENG   207.3 Intr Novel

ENG   112.3 University Writing (5x)

GER   231.3 Intermed German

GER   110.3 Adv German

GER   100.3 Beg German


Other (Selected)

Sustainability Fellow, GWM TL, University of Saskatchewan, May 2022 – 2024

Climate Change and Health, University of Saskatchewan Signature Area Health & Wellness

Provost’s Teaching Award for the College of Arts & Science, March 30, 2021

College of Arts & Science Distinguished Teacher Award in a BSc Program, March 30, 2021

Member, Buffalo Circle, 2020 - 2022

Member, Reconciliation Committee, Dept of Community Health and Epidemiology, 2016 - present

Chair, Program of Interdisciplinary Program Chairs, 2020 - present

Co-Chair, CGPS_ISC Interdisciplinary Committee, Nov 2021 – present

Co-Chair, HlSt Health Studies Program. 2018 - present

Chair, HlSt Health Studies Program. 2015 - 2018

Associate Member, Dept of Community Health and Epidemiology, Reconciliation Committee 2016 - present

Member, CDH, Committee of Department Heads, 2020 - present

Member, EDE, College of Arts & Science Dean's Executive Committee, 2020 - present

Member, CHHD, Culture, Health, and Human Development Program, 2005 - present

Course Director, MEDC 112 Medicine & Society, 1st yr Medicine course, College of Medicine. 2015 - 2018

Appointment: SSiR Social Scientist in Residence, at CLS Canadian Light Source, Saskatoon, Canada, 1. Jan - 30. June 2015

Member, Advisory Board: ESJ Engaged Scholar Journal, 2014 - (Invited)

Member, Editorial Board: Narrative Works, 2014 - (Invited)

Associate Editor: BJP British Journal of Psychology 2007-2013, renewed 2013-2018 (Invited)

Public Service: Member of Board of Directors, Hope Cancer Help Centre, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan 2008-2013.


Articles in Refereed Journals

  • RPeña-Sánchez JN, Osei JA, Marques Santos JD, Jennings D, Andkhoie M, Brass C, Bukassa Kazadi G, Johnson-Jennings M, Lu X, Porter L, Porter R, Quintin CL, Sanderson R, Teucher U, Fowler S. Increasing prevalence and stable incidence rates of inflammatory bowel disease among First Nations: Population-based evidence from a Western Canadian province. Inflammatory Bowel Diseases. 2021; 28(4): 514-22. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ibd/izab096
  • RGao Y, Teucher U, Wolfson E, Baerg K, Graham N, Pfeifer S, Trinder K, Wells M, Peña-Sánchez, JN. Evolution of a community-centred experiential learning module: A mixed methods approach to promote social accountability and community partnership in undergraduate
    medical education. MedEdPublish. 2020 (October); 9(1):217. https://doi.org/10.15694/mep.2020.000217.1
  • RMcRae, D., Janssen, P, Saraswathi, V, Mayhew, M., Mpofu, D., Teucher, U., & Muhajarine, N. (3 Oct 2018). Reduced prevalence of small-for-gestational-age and preterm birth for women of low socioeconomic position: a population-based cohort study comparing antenatal midwifery and physician models of care. BMJ Open, 8(10), 1-11.
  • RSayok, A. K., & Teucher, U. (2018). Loss of Food Plant Knowledge and Identity Among Indigenous Peoples in Malaysia. Journal of Advanced Research in Social and Behavioural Sciences. 11(1): 174-188. 

  • RBaxter, V., Andrushko, J., & Teucher, U.(2018). Size Matters: Package size influences recognition of serving size information. Canadian Journal of Dietetic Practice and Research. 79(3): 1-3. http://dx.doi.org/https://doi.org/10.3148/cjdpr-2018-020.

  • RHolslander, L., Duggleby, W., Teucher, U., Cooper, D., Bally, J., Solar, J., & Steeves, M. (2016). Developing and pilot-testing a Finding Balance intervention for older adult bereaved family caregivers: A randomized trial for feasibility. European Journal of Oncology Nursing, 21, 68-74.

  • RCarr, T., Teucher, U., & Casson, A.G. (2016). Waiting for scheduled surgery: A complex patient experience. Journal of Health Psychology, 22(3): 290-301.

  • RFindlay, I., Lovrod, M., Quinlan, E., Teucher, U., Sayok, A., Bustamante, S., & Domshy, D. (2015). Building critical community engagement through scholarship: Three case studies. ESJ, 1:1. 33-50.

  • RHammond, C., & Teucher, U. (2015). An abundance of selves: Young adults' narrative identities while living with cancer. Cancer Nursing, 40(1): 58-65.
  • RQuinlan, E., & CP4PC (Thomas, R., McMullen, L., Holtslander, L. Kowalsky, K., Schimpf, L., & Teucher, U.; 2015). From play to practice: A Canadian example of arts-in-health knowledge. Arts and Health: An international jorunal frop research, policy, & practice

  • RCarr, T., Teucher, U., & Casson, A. (2015). Time while waiting: Patients' experiences of scheduled surgery. Qualitative Health Research, 25, pp.1673-1685.

  • RHammond, C., Reese, M., & Teucher, U. (2014). Trickster Figures in narratives of young adult cancer: Expressions of uncertainty, subversion, and possibility. Health Psychology, 34(4), 437-45.

  • RHammond, C., Teucher, U., Duggleby, W., & Thomas-MacLean, R. (2012). An ‘unholy alliance’ of existential proportions: Negotiating discourses with men’s experiences of cancer and aging. Journal of Aging Studies, 26(2), 149-161. (Impact Factor: 1.427 (2012)]

  • RCresswell, J., & Teucher, U. (2011). The body and language: M. M. Bakhtin: On ontogenetic development. New Ideas in Psychology, 29, 106-118.  [Impact Factor: 1.424 (2009)]

  • RMitchell, P., Teucher, U., & Kikuno, H. (2010). Cultural Variations in developing a sense of knowing your own mind: A comparison between British and Japanese children. IJBD  International Journal of Behavior and Development, 34:3. 248-258.  [Impact Factor: 1.416 (2009)]
  • RMitchell, P., Bennett, M., & Teucher, U. (2010). Do Children start out thinking they don't know their own Mind? An odyssey in overthrowing the mother of all knowledge”. EJDP European Journal of Developmental Psychology, 7:1. 67-84.  [Impact Factor: 1,081 (2009)].
  • RCarr, T., Teucher, U., Mann, J., & Casson, A. G. (2009). Waiting for surgery from the patient perspective: A review of the literature. Psychology Research and Behaviour Manage-ment, 2. 107-119.
  • RMitchell, P., Teucher, U., Ziegler, F., Bennett, M, & Wyton, R. (2009). Do children start out thinking they don’t know their own minds? Mind and Language, 24:3, 328-346 (19). [Impact Factor: 2.091 (2009)]
  • RTeucher, U., & Kemple, T. (Trans.; 2007). Simmel on the Metaphysics and Aesthetics of Life. Theory, Culture, & Society, 24:7-8. 30-90.  [Impact Factor; 1.015 (2009)]
  • RTeucher, U. (2004). Humanities and Social Sciences in Health Research. In P. Magee (Ed.), A Canadian snapshot of fields of study and innovative approaches to understanding and addressing health issues.  Ottawa: Canadian Institutes for Health Research/Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council.
  • RTeucher, U. (2003). The Therapeutic Psychopoetics of Cancer Metaphors: Challenges in Interdisciplinarity (pp. 1-15). In T. Seiler & B. Janz (Eds.), Free Space: Reconsidering Interdisciplinary Theory and Practice. History of Intellectual Culture, 3 (1).


Chapters in Books

  • Teucher, U. (2019). In the Face of Death: Peter Noll (1984). In Couser, P., & Mintz, S. (Eds), Disability Experiences. Columbia, SC: Layman Poupard Publishing.
  • RCarr, T, & Teucher, U., (2018). Understanding Patients' Wait time for Surgery using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. In M. Gill (Ed.), Sage Publications Ltd. SAGE Research Methods Cases, 1, 1-11. Oxford, UK: SAGE Publications Ltd.

  • Teucher, U., & D’Eon, Marcel (2013). “’What ails you?’ Reflections on Compassion.” In Keeping reflection fresh (Eds. A. Peterkin and P. Brett-MacLean). Kent State University Press.

  • Hammond, C., Teucher, U., & Hamoline, R. (2014). Narrative coherence and disruption: negotiating between positive and existential psychology. In P. Russo-Netzer and A. Batthyany (Eds.), Meaning in Positive and Existential Psychology. New York, NY: Springer Verlag.

  • Teucher, U. (2010). Aboriginal Health Research and Epidemiology: Difference between Indigenous and Western Knowledge. In T. McIntosh, B. Jeffery, & N. Muhajarine (Eds.), Redistributing health: New directions in population health research in Canada. Regina: CPRC Press.
  • Mitchell, P., Bennett, M., & Teucher, U. (2010). Do Children start out thinking they don't know their own Mind? In Theory of Mind: Specialized Capacity or Emergent Property? Perspectives from Non-human and Human Development. New York: Psychology Press.
  • RTeucher, U. (2007). Aestheticizing Cancer: Metaphors and Narratives of Revaluation. In S. Sielke (Ed.). Body as Interface. Heidelberg: Winter.
  • RTeucher, U. (2007). The Incomprehensible Density of Being: Aestheticizing Cancer. In V. Raoul (Ed.), Refitting the Frame: Narratives of disease, disability and trauma. Waterloo: Wilfrid Laurier Press.
  • Teucher, U. (2006). Renegade Cells: Patricia Blondal’s last Poem (pp. 305-310). In B. Sproxton (Ed.). The Winnipeg Connection: Writing Lives at Mid-Century. University of Winnipeg: Prairie Fire Press.
  • Grant, L. (Writer), & Teucher, U. (Co-writer/Producer/Director). (2006, June 14). Musqueam Elder Larry Grant, Canada [Video]. Series Indigenous Health. The Lancet.com. Retrieved  June 14, 2006, from http://www.thelancet.com/online/focus/indigenous_health/canada
  • Grant, L., Blake, S., & Teucher, U. (2004). Cultural identity and the Capilano tradition: Musqueam ancestral names (pp. 45-66). In J. C. Brown & Tyler Petersen (Eds.) UBCWPL Working Papers in Linguistics. Vancouver, BC: University of British Columbia.
  • Chandler, M., Lalonde, C., & Teucher, U. (2003). Culture, continuity, and the limits of narrativity: A comparison of the self-narratives of Native and Non-Native youth (pp. 245-265). In C. Lightfoot & C. Daiuth (Eds.), Narrative analysis: Studying the development of individuals in society. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
  • RTeucher, U. (2001). Writing in the Face of Death: Norbert Elias and Autobiographies of Cancer (pp. 159-174). In T. Salumets (Ed.), Norbert Elias and human interdependencies. Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press.


Book Reviews (selected)

  • Teucher, U. (2022). Book Reviews. [Review of Better Posters: Plan, Design, and Present an Academic Poster by Zen Faulkes), British Journal of Psychology, 113(2), xxx-xx
  • Teucher, U. (2021). Book reviews. [Review of On Decoloniality: Concepts, Analytics, Praxis by W. D. Mignolo and C. E. Walsh], British Journal of Psychology, 112(4), xxx-xx
  • Teucher, U. (2016). Book reviews. [Review of Balanced ethics review: A guide for institutional review board members by S. Whitney], British Journal of Psychology, 107(4), 784-785
  • Teucher, U. (2016). Book Reviews. [Review of Malignant Metaphor: Confronting Cancer Myths by A. Mitchell], British Journal of Psychology, 107(3), 598-599
  • Teucher, U. (2012). Book Reviews. [Review of Psychosis through my eyes by C. Amey], British Journal of Psychology, 103(3), 432-433.
  • Teucher, U. (2011). Review of “M. Freeman, Hindsight”, Walnut Creek, CA: Left Coast Press, 259 pages, 2008. British Journal of Psychology, 102:3.
  • Teucher, U. (2011). Review of “S. Thorne, Interpretive Description”, Walnut Creek, CA: Left Coast Press, 259 pages, 2008. British Journal of Psychology, 102:1.
  • Reimer, J., & Teucher, U. (2009).  Hunger [Review of the book Hunger, by Raymond Tallis]. BJP British Journal of Psychology, 100(2) 448-449.Teucher, U. (2009). Not an easy death [Review of the Book Swimming in a sea of death: A son’s memoir, by David Rieff]. BJP British Journal of Psychology, 100(2) 452-453.
  • Grant, L. and Teucher, U. (2005). Vancouver: A novel misconception [Review of the book Vancouver: A Novel, by David Cruise and Alison Griffiths]. BC Studies, 145, 114-116.
  • Teucher, U. (2003). Poetics of Science. [Review of the book The Hedgehog. The Fox, and the Magister’s Pox, by Stephen J. Gould],Science and Public Policy, 30:6, 465-466.
  • Teucher, U. (2003). Reading Genes, Heavens, and Computers: Metaphor in Science. [Review of the book Experimenting in Tongues: Studies in Science and Language, by M. Doerries (Ed.)], Science and Public Policy, 30:4, 297-298.
  • Teucher, U. (2003). Prosthetics of Order. [Review of the books Making the Body Beautiful, Narrative Prosthesis, and Bodily and Narrative Forms]. Canadian Literature, 178, 132-1333.


Recent Presentations (selected; last 12 months only)

  • Dutrisac S, Zidenberg A, & Teucher U. Lay Perceptions of Mindfulness. Paper accepted for 18th International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry  (ICQI). Urbana, United States. 22 May 2022.
  • Reimer J, & Teucher U. Play this way: Exploring the relationship between play, gender, and adulthood. Paper presented at 18th International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry  (ICQI). Urbana, United States. 21 May 2022. Paper presented at 18th International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry  (ICQI). Urbana, United States. 21 May 2022.
  • Hong M, Birke L, & Teucher U. Pandemic life art project: Participatory animation workshops with adolescents. Paper presented at 18th International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry  (ICQI). Urbana, United States. 21 May 2022.
  • Teucher U, Arseneau C, Bellegarde H, Giap V, Sayed S, Sheck H, Widyaratne A, Dutrisac S, & Reimer J. Students and Climate Change: Lasting Footprints, Beauty, and Catharsis. Paper presented at 18th International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry  (ICQI). Urbana, United States. 21 May 2022.
  • Qiao T., Myge I., Ottley,K., Pereira R.S., Teucher U. & Hunter PV. Hindsight’s 2020: Summarizing a decade of critique of long-term care workforce issues leading up to the pandemic. In S. Kaasalainen (Chair) symposium An Inside Look at Canadian Healthcare Employees’ Experiences of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Canadian Association on Gerontology 50th Annual Educational & Scientific Meeting. Virtual conference (20 Oct 2021). 


Human Development Knowledge Systems Qualitative Research Sustainability, Health, and Care

Short Biography

I first trained as a pediatric nurse and worked in a children’s cancer ward in Hamburg, Germany. Working in India for two years, I explored Eastern philosophies and spiritualities with regard to self, health, and death and dying. After immigrating to Canada, I studied Comparative Literature and Psychology at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. In my interdisciplinary and cross-cultural doctoral dissertation, entitled “Writing the Unspeakable: Metaphor in Cancer Narratives,” I examined the use of metaphor in cancer discourse (sponsored by SSHRC). In my postdoctoral studies in Psychology, I examined constructions of identity in the narratives of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal adolescents, with a focus on adolescent suicide (University of British Columbia, sponsored by CIHR and MSFHR), as well as children’s developing conceptions of self-knowledge (School off Psychology, University of Nottingham, UK; sponsored by ESRC). In 2005 I was hired by the Department of Psychology, University of Saskatchewan, as a member of the Program in Culture and Human Development. In 2013, I spent 6 months as a "Social Scientist in Residence" at the CLS Canadian Light Source in Saskatoon. Since 2015, I have been chairing, and now co-chairing with my colleague Marla Mickleborough, the new interdisciplinary, undergraduate, 4-yr Health Studies Program (College of Arts And Science)..

Research Interests: In most general terms my research engages with Culture, Human Development, and Public Health.


Short Summary of Research Interests

I am an associate professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Saskatchewan. In general, my field of research interests can be best described as “Culture, Health, and Human Development.” More specifically, I am interested in the different ways how human beings negotiate continuity and change throughout the lifespan.


Detailed Summary

A Greek philosopher (Heraclitus) once said that we can never step into the same river twice. This is said to mean that change is pervasive in life and that the only thing that stays the same is the fact of eternal change. However, we don’t seem to live our lives that way. Some people say that we are creatures of habit: in our relationships we take for granted that our family, friends, and partners will stay more or less predictable; and we expect that we are going to university so that we will receive a degree in a few years that will hopefully allow us to find satisfying work. And yet, when we find ourselves in a crisis, such as a serious illness, or when we fall in love (or out of love), or find ourselves in some other transition (e.g., job change, migration), then, at least for a while, anything may seem possible.

 How do we manage these tensions between continuity and change? As our lives unfold and end in time, we are all and always works in progress - and yet we recognize ourselves as the same person, as persisting in time, as maintaining an identity. In fact, it is only because there is change in our lives that we can know that something of us seems to persist; and it is only because something in us seems to persist that we can notice the inevitable changes in ourselves. But how do we live this paradox? And in what ways do we balance change and continuity in our lives? Can we foreclose ourselves against exploration, change, and development - as, according to psychologist James Marcia, some adolescents may do, prematurely settling on a certain identity? Alternatively, can there be too much change – so much so that we might lose any sense of personal or cultural persistence, finding ourselves completely adrift?

These questions bridge the various facets of my research, for example, in the changing ways how young persons make sense of themselves, between childhood and adolescence, as the timelessness of childhood gives way to the growing awareness of past, present, and future of life, identity, and personal stories in adolescence. These questions also become crucial when we find ourselves with a serious illness, such as cancer, and we suddenly question our past, present, and future, doing so differently when we are young adults or when we are ageing. In Canada’s indigenous peoples, the disruptions of change (due to colonization and its aftereffects) and the loss of personal and cultural continuity can be measured in the dramatic rates of youth suicides. Similarly, in many of Malaysia’s indigenous peoples, change has come about in terms of the displacement of entire communities, due to rain forest logging and spreading oil palm plantations; and as the story-telling Elders, the guardians of oral knowledge, memory, and identity, have been dying out, many indigenous peoples no longer know their origin stories or other traditional stories, songs, cultural practices, and sacred rituals. But change and continuity are also at stake for employees, here in Saskatoon, when companies or research facilities such as the Canadian Light Source (a synchrotron on our very own campus), change their organizational structures or research missions in line with concepts of workplace efficiency, advancing knowledge, or changing financial priorities. At our work places, we act not only as individuals, with all our personal differences and identities, but also in terms of our identifications with (or against) the work groups that we are part of, or with (or against) the very institution for which we work. Thus, work place changes can seriously affect the ways how we define our lives and create continuities. In other words, the balance between change and continuity can affect both our mental and physical health, and vice versa – aspects that are at the basis of a new interdisciplinary undergraduate Health Studies program that I will be teaching this year.

In my work I pursue instrumental (problem-focused) interdisciplinarity, applying quantitative and/or qualitative methods according to each research problem. My fields of interdisciplinary interest range from the humanities and fine arts to the social and health sciences. In general, I follow an interpretative approach, informed by poststructuralism, hermeneutics, and the cultural history of ideas in literature, philosophy, and psychology. I believe that language is crucial in understanding different cultural constructions of health, illness, and identity. My Musqueam teacher was Elder Larry Grant (Musqueam Indian Band); my Cree teachers have been Joe Naytowhow (Sturgeon Lake), Julie Roy, and Darwin Chief (Onion Lake). I am currently learning Malay.


Research Lab

Narrative Lab (since 2007) 

As I see it, a research lab should help to stimulate critical thinking and to question assumptions, in a creative space as little unencumbered as possible by a university's often overwhelming structures and expectations. Current members (December 2018): Samantha Black, Ben Dunning, Shannah Dutrisac, Daniel Hooshmand, Jane Kim, Stacey McHenry, Jeongeon Sim, Ulrich Teucher, Ryan Wright, Rebecca Zhao.