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A discourse analysis of the construction of men with post-natal depression in UK newspapers

Fisher, Emily (2011) A discourse analysis of the construction of men with post-natal depression in UK newspapers. Coventry University.

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Abstract

The current study investigated the construction of men suffering with post natal depression in the media through the method of discourse analysis. A sample of 30 UK newspaper articles were obtained using a Lexis Nexis media database search. This sample was then analysed using discourse analysis in order to understand how the themes in the language and discursive devices were used to construct men with post natal depression, and what the use of these aimed to achieve. Findings established that men were constructed as suffering with post natal depression as a result of exogenous rather than hormonal factors. Blaming the development of the disorder in men as a result of the occurrence of it in their female partner's was a further key finding. Further findings demonstrated although men's PND was acknowledged they were constructed as having less entitlement to suffer with the disorder than women. Therefore the theoretical implications of the current findings are important as the findings have highlighted how increased awareness and acknowledgement of PND in men is required in order for new fathers to gain effective treatment and support.

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