Princeton University Library Catalog

It's a Lot to Get Lost In: Mindfulness at Princeton University

Andres, Aubree [Browse]
Senior thesis
Davis, Elizabeth A. [Browse]
Princeton University. Department of Anthropology [Browse]
Class year:
Summary note:
This thesis is examining the ways in which mindfulness may enhance how we as humans can experience the world and the cultural matrix that we operate in, with a focus on “mindful” spaces at Princeton University. I start out with a chapter on individualism and American spirituality & mindfulness to set a wide lens on this conversation. I have found that individualism in mindfulness can be used as one solution to neoliberal capitalist ideas and also as an instigator of that same problem and I call for a more nuanced view of the topic through ethnography. The second chapter is examining the mindful body as a cultural object and examine mindfulness as a practice and an embodied phenomenological experience. The body is always learning and taking in new information, and mindfulness is a great way for anyone to experience the cultural learning as it is happening. The third chapter is an ethnographic chapter about my experiences at Gratitude Yoga as a therapeutic mindful physical space in Princeton, but unaffiliated with the university. The fourth chapter is an ethnographic chapter on Mind and Meditation (REL 324) and it’s meditation practicum, and examining the reasons that Princeton students might be unable to tap into the benefits of mindfulness in an academic space. These chapters all tie together in the conclusion where the idea of bringing the unconscious habitus and practice into focus through mindfulness, we could all become more aware of the cultural matrix in which we operate.