'Celebrating Cancer': Young Women Negotiating the Cultural Politics of Survivorship

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  • This thesis begins with a critical observation that over the past decade, Canadians have witnessed an explosion of discussions in the public sphere about cancer and survivorship, including the celebration of cancer survivors. The proliferation of cancer/survivor discourses circulates expectations about how cancer should be taken on and embodied. There is an urgent need to investigate the effects of such discourses on young women’s (a) access to state and community resources, (b) constructions of health, risk and wellbeing, and (c) personal accounts of their bodies and illness experiences.Drawing on 17 in-depth interviews with young female cancer survivors, this thesis investigates the effects of dominant cancer/survivor discourses on the social and material contexts of young women’s cancer experiences. I argue that young women’s cancer narratives are embedded in discourses of exclusion and responsibilization that actively shape and define what it means to be a ‘good’survivor/citizen.

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  • Copyright © 2013 the author(s). Theses may be used for non-commercial research, educational, or related academic purposes only. Such uses include personal study, research, scholarship, and teaching. Theses may only be shared by linking to Carleton University Institutional Repository and no part may be used without proper attribution to the author. No part may be used for commercial purposes directly or indirectly via a for-profit platform; no adaptation or derivative works are permitted without consent from the copyright owner.
Date Created
  • 2013


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