Humanities Consultation

Humanities Consultations:

In addition to teaching large courses, CHI is also pleased to offer a variety of individualized services that focus on your particular needs. We specialize in three different forms of services (Argumentation, Existential, Creative), with three different stages within each, although we will also gladly flex to meet your particular needs.

Argumentation Services:

Writing an argument can be daunting, no matter how many papers one has written in the past. Our services are open to writers from middle school through post-graduates, and we will offer you the type of structured feedback that improves your paper prior to its submission. Rather than simply “fixing” a paper, we will help with your writing process in order to help you avoid the frustration of staring at a blank screen. These services are intended to fill the gap between the help provided by one’s peers and the reader you anticipate at the end of your process—instructor, editor, etc.

Stage 1: Discovery

Many thinkers are stymied by attempts at writing because they have an inadequate grasp of their topic. In consultation, we will help you discover your argument—what you’re really attempting to say, what you really mean—in two different ways.

A: Outlining—we will listen to you speak about your topic, your interests, your confusions. After asking some questions to clarify the scope and intention of your argument, we will construct an outline that details how your argument might proceed, paragraph by paragraph, in order to make—and not merely hint at—your argument.

B: Reviewing—if you are frustrated with a rough draft, we can review your draft and pull out the heart of the argument you desire to make. Additionally, we will offer recommendations for how to restructure the draft to spotlight your thesis while reworking your extant material in ways to better support this thesis.

Stage 2: Development

Often, writers find that although they have a decent paper—report, article, chapter, book—they are unable to push it toward its potential. Our consultants will work through the argument, pointing out where the argument can be extended (and what resources might help to do that), and where the argument might benefit from being pruned back. We specialize in helping arguments attain a memorable punch at their conclusion—the type of ending that lingers with readers as satisfying and impressive.

Stage 3: Polish

Many writers handicap themselves by agonizing over each word that appears on a screen, and too few therefore allow enough time to polish the final product. We will work with you to point out ways to tighten your sentences, to brighten your language, and to enliven your syntax. We feel that academic writing unnecessarily sacrifices the potential grace bestowed by good prose in favor of an illusory standard of abstracted certainty. Our hope is that we might allow you to investigate the potential for beauty that can shine through in any paper, giving your readers an added and unexpected bonus.

About us:

**Daniel Boscaljon spent years working as a debate coach, writing consultant, and editor. His teaching also emphasized exploring, developing, and polishing arguments intended for audiences ranging from high school teachers to professional scholars. In addition to having edited two scholarly collections of essays, he also serves on the editorial board of the Oxford Journal of Literature and Theology.

 

 

 

Existential Services:

Although the world does what it can to make life easy, at most it often distracts us from facing and confronting the difficulties that inhere within human hearts. Our existential consultations will provide you with a forum for exploring questions regarding the meaning of your life and identifying structural problems that may prevent you from encountering or embracing it. The focus of these sessions will be on identifying and articulating questions that will uncover possibilities of joy without ignoring the harder tragedies of life. Rather than focusing on clinical issues—like depression—our services instead look at existential issues: anguish, despair, inauthenticity, dread; rather than prescribing medications, we instead will focus on the virtues of authenticity, honesty, integrity, courage, faith, hope, and love. These services are intended to fill the gap between traditional therapy and counseling and the life coaching industry.

Stage 1: Discovery:

Most of us become socialized away from asking questions—especially questions about meaning. We learn how to submit with the proper respect, to challenge within the proper boundaries, and to create without the proper motivations. Clients who have just begun waking to the possibility of alternatives for their life will be guided through the preliminary transition from possibility to actuality. The key focus in this stage is to determine questions that will help you ask:

A: Facticity—who are you? What past events have structured your self-identification as such? What habits inform and preserve your daily life? Which of these habits seem incongruent with where you feel most nourished in your everyday world?

B: Necessity—what limitations do you have? What are the responsibilities that are important for you to maintain? How might you open your life while still responding to ongoing matters of importance?

C: Possibility—toward what futures have you oriented yourself? What possibilities do you close off, and what are your motives for doing so? How might you expand possibilities for yourself—what steps would this require?

Stage 2: Development

Gaining a grounded sense of how to balance necessity and possibility within your own existence allows you to gain more control over how to live with intentionality, consistency, and integrity. Questions at this level investigate matters of self-deception and sources of confusion that interrupt a more peaceable sense of dwelling. Overall, the emphasis in this stage is on questions of will and volition: after having discovered who you are, how can you orient yourself toward futures you find desirable?

Stage 3: Polish

After finding who you are and orienting yourself toward desirable futures, the third type of engagement involves a focus on how to live in the present. Questions and dialogues will involve thinking through models of attunement and understanding that will provoke a sense of calm and openness concerning how to engage with moments in the present. Questions will suggest how to live more graciously, generously, and gratefully.

About us:

**Daniel Boscaljon has published often about the human condition based in extensive reading and training in philosophy, psychoanalysis, and theology. His foundational understanding of structures and patterns of thinking, feeling, and behaving inform his ability to listen and talk with clients.

 

 

 

 

Creative Services:

Few things are as infuriating to those who desire to create as the endless possibilities involved in a blank document or canvas. Equally dismaying is having something with potential but a lack of direction on where it might be taken. We are interested in working with artists of all types on how to gain inspiration, develop creative content, and how to share the results with the larger world. Our process is to engage in an ongoing discussion of exploration and inquiry: we provide a non-biased audience trained in aesthetic appreciation with a background in interpretation that will push you to ask questions about your creative works and process that otherwise may have lingered in the background. These services are designed to nourish your inner artist, moving your creative work from a private, occasional hobby to a habit—possibly with an expanded audience.

 

Stage 1: Discovery:

Whether you’ve completed many creative projects or are tentatively exploring the possibilities of opening your creative side, we provide services for how to think through awakening one’s creative side. This process might take one of the following forms:

A: Artistic Inspiration: Creating something new oftentimes requires knowing how to repurpose something that came before. Becoming familiar with previous artworks sometimes provides a base upon which your own work might emerge.

B: Philosophical Inspiration: Art crystalizes the experience of truth—the truth of a sensory experience, of a lesson learned, of an ineffable moment.

C: Psychological Inspiration: The best art tends to be that which plays on the paradoxes of human existence, creating and developing specific questions that are represented within the space created by the work of art. Studying structures of the human psyche sometimes unlocks ideas for how those tensions can be represented in artistic forms.

Stage 2: Development

Creation is a process, a truth that many emerging artists neglect to their detriment. CHI staff will fashion a plan for the development of your artwork, working through ideas of what can be edited, altered, extended and expanded. By focusing on artmaking as a process, rather than a product, we will focus on how to view art in ways that develop your initial points of inspiration. We also will provide encouragement to gain the self-discipline required to truly cultivate your being as an artist.

Stage 3: Polish

After a work has attained its final form as a whole, we work with you on how to focus on the details. Whether focusing on word choice, small brush strokes, or chord transitions, CHI consultants will encourage you to scrutinize ways to translate a good effort into your best work.

About us:

**Daniel Boscaljon has a thorough knowledge of aesthetic theory and extensive training in the practice of interpreation—particularly textual interpretation. Beyond his theoretical work about fiction, Daniel also has written and published both fiction and non-fiction pieces.

 

 

 

Miscellaneous Services:

We often encounter times when we lack words for our questions and have forgotten paths that would allow us to move forward. If you have any other desires for a consultation—whether on a corporate or individual level—we invite you to contact us regarding the nature of your problem and how you believe the humanities may help you to develop your self—or your business—in a direction that you find more suitable.

Costs:

1 Hour                                                   10 Hours

CHI Members    $75                           $600

Non-Members   $100                        $800

Contact us with questions or for more information.