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Visual identities: choreographies of gaze, body movement and speech in mother-midwife interaction

Lomax, Helen (2011). Visual identities: choreographies of gaze, body movement and speech in mother-midwife interaction. In: Reavey, Paula ed. Visual Methods in Psychology: Using and Interpreting Images in Qualitative Research. Abingdon, U.K.: Routledge.

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The aim of this chapter is to explore the potential of a video-based methodology for theorising identity. Drawing on the theoretical and analytical framework of conversation analysis (CA) and video-based research on mother-midwife interaction (Lomax, 2005), the chapter will explore the role of the visual in mediating social interaction and in the discursive construction of identity. Drawing on sequences of interaction in which mothers talk with midwives about their recent birth experiences, the chapter will examine how particular normative professional and patient identities are accomplished locally and sequentially through co-ordinated gaze, body movement and speech. Mothers and midwives story-telling activity can be understood as a dance through which each subtly displays, through their talk and visual attention to the other, their acknowledgement of, and shifting affiliations to, institutionally defined and wider cultural understandings of birth and mothering and through which particular maternal and professional identities are ‘talked into being’ (Heritage, 1984).

Item Type: Book Chapter
Copyright Holders: 2011 Routledge
ISBN: 0-415-48348-4, 978-0-415-48348-3
Keywords: visual methods; video; identity, conversation analysis; motherhood
Academic Unit/Department: Health and Social Care > Health and Social Care
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Item ID: 26407
Depositing User: Helen Lomax
Date Deposited: 04 Feb 2011 09:25
Last Modified: 24 Mar 2015 09:31
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