Research interests: media discourse, digital literacies and identities, critical metaphor analysis, corpus assisted discourse analysis.
My research interests fall into two areas of health and discourse. Firstly, I research the relationship between the discourse structures found in health advice and public compliance to that advice, public perceptions of health threats, and public use of the media for health information. Secondly, I’m interested in how people with mental health problems structure their experiences through various cognitive conceptualisations. Cutting across my research are discourses of anxiety about health, illness and contamination that continually overlap with issues of gender and women’s experiences of their bodies.
I am a health and media researcher with a particular interest in web technologies and their effects on experiences of long-term health conditions. My previous research has used corpus linguistics in the analysis of online mental health communities and general practitioner focus groups, and I have also examined multiple roles of Facebook in the lives of people with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes through a combination of multimodal discourse analysis and online ethnography. With Gavin Brookes (Lancaster) I am currently working on a monograph on corpus approaches to health communication and an edited collection on methods of analysing health discourse.
I am currently in the first year of my Applied Linguistics PhD in the University of Nottingham’s School of English, and work in coordination with the Institute of Mental Health’s Centre for Dementia. My PhD takes a multi-method and multi-modal approach to explore how the British Press and charities currently represent people with dementia, alongside the ways in which such representations can be received by, and impact, different people (please follow the above link for further detail). My thesis reflects my two broad key areas of interest. Firstly, regarding the visual and linguistic representation of ideologies, especially in relation to health, gender and age. Secondly, in combining methodologies and approaches, including using focus groups, interviews and textual analysis, as well as corpus linguistics, (multimodal) critical discourse analysis and thematic analysis, to provide more multifaceted insights into health communication.