The next Geographies of Health and Wellbeing reading group session will be held on Wednesday 25th January, 12-1pm, in the IHRR boardroom on the Durham University Science Site.

This session will focus on considering video narratives in relation to health/illness/wellbeing. During the session, we will watch some short video testimonials (available online) of individuals speaking about their illness experiences. Owing to the 22nd-28th January being Cervical Cancer Prevention Week, the videos selected for the session will relate to cervical cancer diagnosis, experience, screening and awareness-raising. To support our discussions, please also read Greenhalgh, T and Hurtwitz, B (1999) Why study narrative?, British Medical Journal,  318 (7175), pp48-50. Please arrive for the session promptly for the short video screenings to begin.

There are many directions in which we could take discussion in this session and ideas are warmly welcomed. Some suggested questions/ideas might include:

  • The uses and limitations of ‘illness narrative’ as a concept
  • What differences do communication methods make?: In what ways do video narratives differ from voice-only recorded or written narratives? What difference might this make to research methodologies (e.g. use of video recordings rather than tapes in interviews)?What differences might this make to attempts to increase awareness or to influence health-related behaviours?
  • Ethics and video: viewing/’gaze’ engagements; Issues of confidentiality and privacy; voyeurism; witnessing suffering
  • Uses of video: disseminating research findings; policy/campaign usage; influence on lay person health practices/knowledges
  • Health knowledge distribution: the role of technologies (TV, film, video, internet, online news, online community groups, social networks, etc); the politics of access to these media and accompanying knowledges; ‘lay’ and ‘expert’ knowledges

If you would like to attend this session, please contact Abi McNiven before the 18th January (for catering purposes).


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