Interpersonal Issues in Expressing Lay Knowledge: A Discursive Psychology Approach
de Kok, Bregje
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de Kok, B. & Widdicombe, S. (2010) Interpersonal Issues in Expressing Lay Knowledge: A Discursive Psychology Approach, Journal of Health Psychology, vol. 15, , pp. 1190-1200,
This article examines lay knowledge about causes of infertility. We use discursive psychology to analyse semi-structured interviews with purposively sampled Malawians with a fertility problem. We observe that respondents deny knowledge of causes, sometimes emphatically, but this co-occurs with descriptions of potential causes. We show that these respondents thereby address problematic interpersonal issues: namely that one is not entitled to medical knowledge and that negative inferences that may be drawn about someone who knows particular causes of infertility. These findings shed new light on previous observations, and have implications for the study of lay knowledge.