The Palgrave Handbook of Adult Mental Health

Discourse and Conversation Studies

  • Michelle O’Reilly
  • Jessica Nina Lester

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xlvi
  2. Introduction: The Social Construction of Normality and Pathology

    1. Michelle O’Reilly, Jessica Nina Lester
      Pages 1-19
  3. Reconceptualising Mental Health and Illness

  4. Naming, Labelling, and Diagnosing

About this book


This Handbook gathers together empirical and theoretical chapters from leading scholars and clinicians to examine the broad issue of adult mental health. The contributors draw upon data from a variety of contexts to illustrate the multiple ways in which language as action can assist us in better understanding the discursive practices that surround adult mental health. Conversation and discourse analysis are useful, related approaches for the study of mental health conditions, particularly when underpinned by a social constructionist framework. In the field of mental health, the use of these two approaches is growing, with emergent implications for adults with mental health conditions, their practitioners, and/or their families.

Divided into four parts; Reconceptualising Mental Health and Illness; Naming, Labelling and Diagnosing; The Discursive Practice of Psychiatry; and Therapy and Interventions; this Handbook provides a comprehensive overview of current debates regarding adult mental health.


mental health discourse language linguistics discourse analysis conversation analysis social constructionism critical approaches alcohol attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) autism autism spectrum disorder counseling diagnosis Exploration interaction intervention interview online psychiatry psychotherapy suicide Therapeut

Editors and affiliations

  • Michelle O’Reilly
    • 1
  • Jessica Nina Lester
    • 2
  1. 1.University of LeicesterUK
  2. 2.Indiana UniversityUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2016
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, London
  • eBook Packages Behavioral Science and Psychology
  • Print ISBN 978-1-349-69789-2
  • Online ISBN 978-1-137-49685-0
  • About this book