Right, wright, rite and write constitute the hegemony of the /right/. And as such they are probably the most intriguing set of words in the English language because of the interplay amongst their various meanings and the role this plays both in helping to create and resolve long standing personal and interpersonal problems. We should attend to them because they form a hidden common ground / sound to all our actions and interactions. Thus when intractable problems are encountered it is necessary to unravel the role of this hegemony in helping to resolve them

The first step is to note that despite being pronounced exactly the same  they are spelt differently. However, even dyslexics should be able to see that the four words have two spelling roots:  'right' and 'rite', and exist with and without the 'w'.  Less obviously they embody the tension between being biologically right (or left) hand dominant (nature) and the obligation to conform to the cultural norm of doing things 'right' (nurture).

The second step is to define Intractable problems as those long standing personal, inter-personal and interactional problems which endure despite one's best attempts at resolving them even when using common-sense and trying to follow experts' advice. Our non-traditional solution  involves asking the meta-problem question:

"What constitutes necessary or sufficient evidence that latent / converted handedness is a co-factor causing or sustaining presenting problems, whatever those problems might be?"

This meta-problem is seldom acknowledged because we are immersed in the  hegemony of the /right/.

There are two types of problems:

  • What is ... ? these are conceptual problems concerned primarily with the meaning or definition of entities of one sort or another. They are identified by their "What is ....?" nature, eg dyslexia, dysgraphia, ADHD, PTSD, learning difficulty or learning disability? This consultancy's overarching conceptual questions are "What is converted / latent handedness?" and "What does the 'hegemony of the /right/ mean?". Problems which are conceptual in emphasis are solved 'suddenly' either by personal insight or by accepting the diktat of some authority.

  • What if ..../ How to ... ? these are practical problems concerned primarily with effecting change. They are identified by their "What if we do this instead of that?"nature. For example what do we need to do (differently) to cure anorexia, improve educational performance, ensure that reasonable adjustments have been made in the workplace for those with disabilities, or prevent young offenders becoming persistent offenders? Here the overarching practical questions are: "What do we need to do to identify converted / latent handedness?" and "What can we do to handle the hegemony of the /right/?"Problems which are primarily practical are solved gradually and in a step-wise manner, if they ever are..

However, this concept-practice dichotomy is a human construction which is  handled better as two sides of the same coin. Or better still, as the two sides of a sheet of paper with each 'page' having two aspects -technically labelled recto and verso- aligned here with concept and practice. Two implications follow. First, for every seemingly practical problem there are corresponding conceptual implications and for every seemingly conceptual question there are practical consequences. Second, since problems often reside within other problems and confusions within other confusions there is the need to turn from page to page.

Getting various agencies to acknowledge the role of latent / converted handedness as a co-factor in a variety of apparently intractable problems  best exemplifies this duality.  While those directly involved as clients or working in the interests of clients .acknowledge latent handedness and accept its implications for 'the conduct of treatment' programmes, officialdom is unwilling or unable to.   

Concrete miseries

This consultancy's radical approach helps individuals, agencies, corporations, and institutions solve a variety of, to quote Karl Popper, 'concrete miseries' by dealing with ignorance about three phenomena:

  • World-views:ignorance about world-views, sometimes known as mind-sets, explanatory schemas or frameworks among both professionals and the public. Differences in world-view explains why experts working in the same field often disagree among themselves - for world-views determine which facts are accepted as evidence and what is not.

  • Latent / converted handedness:this core body-mind condition is identified when we find individuals writing with their non-adept hand. The label latent / converted hander isshort-hand for the fact that more than the hand is involved in the condition. Failure to eliminate it as a co-factor in any presenting problem when conducting evaluations for psychological, educational, medico-legal or legal purposes incurs heavy financial and emotional costs, particularly for the entire education system. Its neglect will also result in ineffectual Personalised Education, Professional Development or Reasonable Adjustments in the Work Place for Fitness-to-Work treatment programmes

  • Hegemony of the /right/: Ignorance about the role of the hegemony of the right, wright, rite and write in 'causing' seemingly intractable problems explains why they are sustained.

The hegemony of the /right/, latent / converted handedness and world views are interwoven and interlocking issues.


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