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A portfolio of work on stigma, personality disorder and counselling psychology

Vingoe, L.M. (2007). A portfolio of work on stigma, personality disorder and counselling psychology. (Unpublished Doctoral thesis, City University London)


The present study aimed to explore the discourse around personality disorder (PD) (II) and reveal its nature, functions and implications. The epistemological orientation ofthe work was social constructionist and the research method employed a form ofFoucauldian discourse analysis. Through the examination of a variety oftexts taken from a pre-defined time period, the research explored how the object 'personality disorder' was constructed at a particular moment in history in a sample ofprofessional, cultural and political texts (academic journal articles, broadsheet and tabloid press articles, parliamentary debates published in Hansard). Constructions and discourses exemplified were shown to prescribe particular positions for individuals with personality disorder, which were, more often than not, limiting and served to close down opportunities for action and experience for these individuals. It is argued that the largely disempowering constructions exemplified in the research both reflect, and contribute to, the stigmatisation, negative discrimination, rejection and exclusion expenenced by people with personality disorder and can have a profoundly damaging effect on their mental health and their care. The research emphasises the importance ofa critical awareness ofthe power ofdiscourse in counselling psychology theory and practice and highlights ,the unique role of counselling psychologists (as agents ofpsychological treatment, as important sources of education, learning, and supervision, as researchers) as providing an opportunity, through future discourse, to reach a wide range ofindividuals and so have the potential to bring about positive change in the lives of individuals with personality disorder

Publication Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Psychology
Doctoral Theses
Doctoral Theses > School of Arts and Social Sciences Doctoral Theses
PDF (Vol2) - Accepted Version
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PDF (Vol1) - Accepted Version
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