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A qualitative study of women’s motivations for, and experiences and perceptions of, social smoking

Cargill, Anouska (2010) A qualitative study of women’s motivations for, and experiences and perceptions of, social smoking. Loughborough University.

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Abstract

The phenomenon of ‘social’ smoking is increasingly popular amongst university students, but previous research lacks a consistent definition and neglects its gendered dimensions. Using focus groups (n=3), the present study adopts an inductive approach to investigate young women university students’ (n=16) accounts of their experiences, perceptions and motivations for smoking socially. The focus groups were audio recorded and the data transcribed verbatim. Subsequent thematic analysis identified four overarching themes: (1) pursuing a ‘social’ rather than ‘traditional’ smoker identity; (2) alcohol as an account for social smoking; (3) gendering social smoking; and (4) social smoking: spatial and temporal constraints and affordances. These emergent themes are discussed in relation to previous research findings. Finally, suggestions are made for the development of gender specific university intervention initiatives.

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