Symbolic Gender Boundaries in News Discourse on Psychotropics Use and Drinking: An Analysis of the Swedish Press Debate 2000–2009
2013 (English)In: NORA: Nordic Journal of Feminist and Gender Research, ISSN 0803-8740, E-ISSN 1502-394X, Vol. 21, no 1, 57-73 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Psychotropics and alcohol are psychoactive substances with different cultural meanings and opposing gender associations. This paper examines the Swedish press debate ongender and psychotropics and compares it with the press debate on gender and alcohol, aiming toidentify the conditions under which gendered moral boundaries of acceptable/unacceptableconsumption are defended. The study shows that boundaries acquire a heightened moral status innews stories (1) that deal with a topic related to cultural ideas about essential gender difference,(2) where the cultural status of the psychoactive substance is linked to selfish and/or hedonisticmotives, and (3) where innocent victims of consumption can be identified. Moreover, it shows thatthe “bad” characters constructed through this moral boundary are portrayed as exhibiting“excessive masculinity” and “insufficient femininity”. On the basis of these findings, it is arguedthat newspaper discourse on psychotropics and alcohol still relies quite heavily on gendered andheteronormative ideas.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 21, no 1, 57-73 p.
gender, psychotropics, alcohol, culture, media, discourse, Sweden
Research subject Sociology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-80639DOI: 10.1080/08038740.2012.694908OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-80639DiVA: diva2:556440
ProjectsWomen, health and substance use (FAS, grant 2007-2131)Exclusion and Inclusion in the Late Welfare State: the Case of Alcohol and Drugs (FAS, grant 2006-1523)
FunderForte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare, 2007-2131, 2006-1523.