The press and public on mental health: a corpus linguistic analysis of UK newspaper coverage of mental illness (1995-2014), compared with the UK National Attitudes to Mental Illness survey

Hannaford, Ewan David (2017) The press and public on mental health: a corpus linguistic analysis of UK newspaper coverage of mental illness (1995-2014), compared with the UK National Attitudes to Mental Illness survey. MPhil(R) thesis, University of Glasgow.

Due to Embargo and/or Third Party Copyright restrictions, this thesis is not available in this service.
Printed Thesis Information: https://eleanor.lib.gla.ac.uk/record=b3313115

Abstract

Stigmas associated with mental illness have been shown to have a severe impact on the lives of people with mental health conditions. Mass media influence on the formation and perpetuation of stigmas is well-documented, and prior research has found the media to present several stigmatising representations of mental health issues. Due to the influence of the media in informing public opinion on mental illness, there have been concerted efforts in recent times to de-stigmatise press coverage of mental illness. However, whether coverage has changed in response to these efforts, and whether recognised stigmas and stereotypes have been dispelled from UK press discourse on mental health has not yet been fully established.
To evaluate this, this study analysed a corpus of 12,000 UK newspaper articles from 1995-2014, with keyword and collocate analyses being implemented. The results of these analyses were compared between years of coverage and types of British newspaper, determining how UK press coverage of mental health issues changed over a 20-year period, with particular focus on the presence or absence of stigmas in this coverage. Keyword and collocate results were then compared with responses to questions in the UK national Attitudes to Mental Illness Survey (TNS BMRB, 2015), to ascertain the extent to which public attitudes correlated with press coverage of the same period. Decreases in key stigmas were uncovered in press coverage and found to correlate with decreases in negative public attitudes relating to these stigmas, as well as increases in press coverage of mental health stigma correlating with increased public awareness of stigma. However, whilst improvements in press coverage of mental illness were identified, stigmatising coverage was also found to have remained present to a significant degree in the UK press, demonstrating the need for continued de-stigmatisation efforts.

Item Type: Thesis (MPhil(R))
Qualification Level: Masters
Keywords: Corpus Linguistics, Mental Health, Press Discourse, Public Attitudes
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
P Language and Literature > PE English
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN1990 Broadcasting
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts > School of Critical Studies > English Language and Linguistics
Funder's Name: British Academy (BRITACAD)
Supervisor's Name: Emmott, Dr. Catherine and Anderson, Dr. Wendy
Date of Award: 2017
Embargo Date: 2 October 2020
Depositing User: Mr Ewan Hannaford
Unique ID: glathesis:2017-9016
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 01 Jun 2018 15:00
Last Modified: 22 Jun 2018 10:27
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/9016

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item