Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences

Cover image for Vol. 29 Issue 3

Edited By: Åshild Slettebø and Lennart Fredriksson

Impact Factor: 1.197

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2014: 35/108 (Nursing (Social Science))

Online ISSN: 1471-6712

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FREE Editor's Choice paper - September 2015

An envisioning about the caring in listening
Camilla A.-L. Koskinen and Unni Å. Lindström

In the chosen article from the September issue of Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences, the authors’ aims are to make visible new dimensions of listening in caring and to uncover an envisioning of this area in caring science. A practical implication of this theoretical study is to improve the care for patients, the suffering human being. The chosen method is a hermeneutic reading based on Gadamer’s understanding of hermeneutic philosophy. Readings of Dostoyevsky’s work Crime and Punishment and The Brothers Karamazov form the basis of the hermeneutic reading. The authors claim to uncover patterns of meaning-bearing units and interpretation of caring in listening. One important finding is the importance of listening without condemnation. In addition the authors found that it is of great importance that caregivers show compassion and have the courage to remain in the struggle of suffering. Caregivers can carry the patients through negative experiences of suffering. According to this study, caregivers’ ability to listen can help suffering patients move from darkness, degradation, and unendurable pain to the light, and by this awaken a new joy to live. The caregivers’ compassionate listening may renew and transform the patient to find a new direction in life and to live a life in accordance with their own individuality. Finally the authors claim that this kind of caring listening may take patient out of the pain of their condition into communion with fellow human beings. As editor of an international journal focusing on caring science, I found this article unique, revealing new dimensions of caring science. It has clear implications and recommendations for clinical practice with its focus on the importance of listening in caring.

Åshild Slettebø, Editor in Chief, SJCS

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