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Making sense of melancholy: sub-categorisation and the perceived risk of future depression

journal contribution
posted on 2012-04-01, 00:00 authored by Tamara BrowneTamara Browne, F Iqbal
This paper investigates the relationship between an individual's experience of depression and her conceptualisation of its role in her life and sense of identity. Based on a mixed methods study involving interviews with 37 women diagnosed with unipolar or bipolar depression, the findings indicate that women who considered most of their episodes to have been triggered by events or circumstances in their lives were more likely to believe that their depression could in future be overcome, whereas those who did not consider the majority of their episodes to have been triggered were more likely to believe their depression to be chronic. Thus, women who participated in the study perceived the risk that they might never be able to overcome depression differently according to whether they believed most of their depressive episodes could be categorised as having been triggered or not. The reasons behind their beliefs are explored. Implications for the traditional medical exogenous–endogenous (reactive–endogenous) distinction are discussed.

History

Journal

Health, risk and society

Volume

14

Issue

2

Season

Special issue: the categorisation of health risks

Pagination

171 - 189

Publisher

Taylor & Francis

Location

Abingdon, Eng

ISSN

1369-8575

eISSN

1469-8331

Language

eng

Publication classification

C Journal article; C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2012, Taylor & Francis