Invisible Breath

Alice Malpass, Elspeth Penny

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
118 Downloads (Pure)


In this article we introduce the creative writing workshop “Dear Breath” and explore how those living with breathlessness tell the story of their breathlessness through letters. We explore what types of character letter writers bestow on breath (as friend, ally, or enemy) and whether they locate the troubling plotline of their breathlessness as a problem in the air or within their body. Starting with the premise that letters are stories, we were interested in how the choice of materials became part of the storytelling. Through creating letters as visual stories, participants discover which type of story they are in (restitution, resolution, or retribution). We explore two thematic storylines: stories that explore the boundaries between breath, body, air, and personhood; and stories that explore the impermanence of the breath as “other” and entreaties for it to stay. We share visual examples of practice.
Original languageEnglish
Article number4
Pages (from-to)43-70
Number of pages28
JournalStorytelling, Self, Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2019

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