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The study of mental distress and the (re)construction of identities in men and women with experience of long-term mental distress

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<mark>Journal publication date</mark>03/2015
<mark>Journal</mark>Disability and Society
Issue number3
Volume30
Number of pages13
Pages (from-to)327-339
StatePublished
Early online date27/03/15
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

This article explores the possibility of using a theoretical framework drawn from disability studies in the field of mental health, and the study of identity (re)construction in the recovery process. In this PhD project, 33 narratives were analysed using framework analysis. The analysis showed that disablism was present and powerful in the participants? lives, and also showed how disablism shaped how the participants thought and felt about themselves. As Carol Thomas argues, when analysing disablism one should also focus on who we are and are prevented from being, as disabled people. The conclusion is that processes of oppression were central when it comes to understanding the (re)construction of identities. A disability studies perspective is thus relevant in the field of mental distress, and can be used to enhance the understanding of the process of identity (re)construction.