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Illness Narratives in Manic-Depressive Disorder: Issues of Self and Identity

Page, Anthony (2004) Illness Narratives in Manic-Depressive Disorder: Issues of Self and Identity. In: Narrative, Memory & Identity: Theoretical and Methodological Issues. University of Huddersfield, Huddersfield, pp. 153-162.

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      This paper considers the illness narratives of four research participants, each of
      whom had a diagnosis of manic-depressive disorder. Manic-depressive
      disorder is characterised by prolonged and sometimes severe changes in mood
      in the direction of both depression and abnormal elation, so it might be
      expected that the research participants would experience a sense of fragility or
      instability of self or identity. The paper examines to what extent this is
      revealed in their illness narratives.
      Manic-depressive disorder is a severe mental illness characterised by changes
      in mood in the direction of depression or elation to a pathological degree and is
      often associated with other profound changes in biological and psychological
      functioning. The symptoms of the disorder are such that sufferers can come
      into conflict with other people and as a result experience significant disruption
      in their social circumstances.
      Though there are some recent autobiographical accounts of the experience
      of manic-depressive disorder (see Jamison, 1996; Garner, 1997 for example)
      the research literature on illness narratives in severe mental illness concentrates
      on people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia (for example Saris, 1995; Baker,
      1996; Roe and Ben-Yishai, 1999). The present study was conceived as an
      attempt to begin to fill this gap.
      Ethical Issues
      The local research ethical committee of the district health authority granted
      ethical approval for the study. Patients were recruited as research participants
      from my outpatient clinic, but were only approached if they were relatively
      mentally well at the time. I explained the nature and purpose of the research,
      invited questions about it, and left them a copy of the participant information

      Item Type: Book Chapter
      Additional Information: Copyright for chapters remain with individual authors at all times and permission should be sought from the author for any reproduction other than for personal use.
      Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
      H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
      Schools: School of Human and Health Sciences > Narrative and Memory Research Group > Narrative and Memory Research Group Annual Conference
      School of Human and Health Sciences
      Related URLs:
      Depositing User: Cherry Edmunds
      Date Deposited: 09 Jul 2009 09:20
      Last Modified: 30 Jul 2010 14:14


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