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Analyzing agency and identity navigation in addiction stories by drawing on actor-network theory and narrative positioning analysis
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Public Health Sciences, Centre for Social Research on Alcohol and Drugs (SoRAD).ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2473-6330
Number of Authors: 12023 (English)In: Drugs: education prevention and policy, ISSN 0968-7637, E-ISSN 1465-3370, Vol. 30, no 1, p. 95-104Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In addiction stories in which dependence is experienced as an antagonistic force, agency manifests as enigmatic. As narrators in these stories usually describe how they lost their agency to a substance, we may ask who then acts. By drawing on the actor-network theory, I propose that addiction stories should be approached with an ontology that allows agency also to non-human actors and conceptualizes both human and non-human agencies as relational. Moreover, I argue that addiction stories perform complex identity navigation that can be captured by analysing them from the dimensions of ‘story,’ ‘interaction,’ and ‘identity claim’. As addiction stories describe what kinds of unique human and non-human elements and assemblages have contributed to the development of addiction, they provide expressive material to analyze how their narrators reassemble their addictive past (story), justify it to their audience (interaction) and articulate who they are (identity claim). By approaching addiction stories through these dimensions, we can produce knowledge on what kinds of identity alignments with particular human and non-human actors promote or hinder addiction as part of specific assemblages. This knowledge can help health practitioners focus their treatment interventions on the relational identities that act as barriers or facilitators of recovery. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2023. Vol. 30, no 1, p. 95-104
Keywords [en]
Addiction stories, actor-network theory, assemblage, narrative positioning theory, self, story, interaction, identity claim
National Category
Sociology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-202599DOI: 10.1080/09687637.2022.2035684ISI: 000753800800001Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85125134334OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-202599DiVA, id: diva2:1643726
Available from: 2022-03-10 Created: 2022-03-10 Last updated: 2023-02-22Bibliographically approved

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Törrönen, Jukka

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