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How we say what we do and why it is important: An idiosyncratic analysis of mental health nursing identity on social media
International Journal of Mental Health Nursing, Volume: 31, Issue: 3, Pages: 708 - 721
Swansea University Author: Stephen Mckenna-Lawson
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This paper is the culmination of a qualitative research project into mental health nursing (MHN) identity via exploration of a social media campaign organized in 2018 by the UK Mental Health Nurses Association. Through engagement with this campaign and a multimethod approach, this paper proposes a n...
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This paper is the culmination of a qualitative research project into mental health nursing (MHN) identity via exploration of a social media campaign organized in 2018 by the UK Mental Health Nurses Association. Through engagement with this campaign and a multimethod approach, this paper proposes a new and novel heuristic framework for exploring MHN identity holistically, through what is termed the 6Ps of MHN identity. The 6Ps – encompassing the professional, personal, practical, proximal, philosophical, and political aspects of identity – were previously shared with members of the MHN research community at both the 2019 and 2020 proceedings of the International Mental Health Nursing Research Conference. To examine the identity expressed in the social media campaign, all contributions by nurses were amalgamated into one ‘text’ for analysis. When this text was examined, the focus was the particular language used by MHNs. This granular analysis concentrated on word choice, form, and frequency as the constituent aspects of meaning. Even when it was necessary to examine larger grammatical units, the key nouns – grammatical objects and subjects – were the primary focus of analysis. Following this, the author – a mental health nurse themselves – applied their personal understanding of the field of practice to the text to arrive at an understanding of its contents. This approach is the first in the field of MHN identity research to examine the profession’s identity as expressed by members on social media, as well as the linguistic form of that expression.
This work was completed independently, prior to the author’s current affiliation to Swansea University, when they were working clinically in mental health services in London.
hermeneutics, language, mental health, mental health nursing, social media
Faculty of Medicine, Health and Life Sciences
No financial support was given to this piece of research.