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Gendering attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: a discursive analysis of UK newspaper stories

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  • Psychology


Discursive psychology is used to study the gendering of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in UK national newspapers in the period of 2009-11. The analysis examines how gendering is embedded in causal attributions and identity constructions. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is portrayed as a predominantly male phenomemon with representations of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder being gendered through extreme stories about victims, villains or heroes that depict boys and men as marginalised, exceptional or dangerous. There is also a focus on mothers as the spokespersons and caregivers for parenting and family health while fathers are rendered more invisible. This contributes to our understanding of how attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is constructed in the media using a range of gendered representations that draw on cultural stereotypes familiar in Western societies.

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