McAvoy, Jean (2007) Constructing Subjects, Producing Subjectivities: Developing Analytic Needs in Discursive Psychology. In: Narrative and Memory. University of Huddersfield, Huddersfield, pp. 53-62.

The publication of Potter and Wetherell’s (1987) blueprint for a discursive
social psychology was a pivotal moment in the discursive turn in psychology.
That transformational text went on to underpin much contemporary discursive
psychology; paving the way for what has become an enriching range of
analytic approaches, and epistemological and ontological arguments
(Wetherell, Taylor and Yates, 2001a; 2001b). Twenty years on, and as
discursive psychology continues to develop, the approaches it encompasses are
becoming more vibrantly contested and a range of positions are forming
around what one might appropriately designate a discursive psychology, and
what form that discursive psychology should take (Wetherell, forthcoming,
In this exploratory paper I pursue some of these debates insofar as they
offer analytic resources for my PhD study of women’s accounts of success and
failure. I outline two different strands in discursive psychology; an
epistemological constructionism concerned with how meaning is established in
interaction; and an ontological constructionism, which takes this somewhat
further by looking at the implications of constructions for subjects and
subjectivity. I consider a range of resources available for a discursive
psychology attentive to the everyday practices of lived lives, to the
intersubjective production of meanings and to the theorisation of individual
history and individual differences. As part of this, I explore the potential
contribution of a psycho-social discursive psychology, significant for the
inextricable connection it makes between individual and society, and for how it
might inform notions of a dynamic, acting, individual. In this, however, I query
whether a discursive psycho-social psychology must necessarily draw upon
traditional psychoanalytic architectures.

cover06.jpg - Cover Image

Download (28kB) | Preview
Chapter_6_-_Jean_McAvoy.pdf - Published Version

Download (35kB) | Preview


Downloads per month over past year

Downloads per month over past year for

Downloads per month over past year for

Add to AnyAdd to TwitterAdd to FacebookAdd to LinkedinAdd to PinterestAdd to Email