Reconstructing my identity: an autoethnographic exploration of depression and anxiety in academia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
51 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

This study adopts an evocative autoethnography approach, utilising diary entries collected during the author’s three-month absence from her university due to depression and anxiety. A contemporary methodology, autoethnography seeks to use personal experience to provide a deeper understanding of culture. In this personal story, the author explores her decline in mental health and subsequent reconstruction of her academic identity in order to enhance understanding of the organisational culture of higher education.

This paper illustrates how, rather than being an achievement, academic identity is an ongoing process of construction. Although mental health illness can contribute to a sense of loss of self, identity can be re-constructed during and after recovery. Autoethnographic explorations of depression and anxiety in higher education provide a deeper understanding of an often stigmatized issue, but researchers should be alive to the political and ethical pitfalls associated with deeply reflexive research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)235-246
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Organizational Ethnography
Volume7
Issue number3
Early online date25 Jun 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 8 Oct 2018

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Reconstructing my identity: an autoethnographic exploration of depression and anxiety in academia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this