'Filling one's days': managing sick leave legitimacy in an online forum
2011 (English)In: Sociology of Health and Illness, ISSN 0141-9889, E-ISSN 1467-9566, Vol. 33, no 5, 761-776 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
An inherent part of the general understanding of illness is that it is incapacitating, making those who are ill unable to do things that they would normally do. Staying at home from work is a common consequence, and what 'ill' people do while at home then becomes accountable. This article explores online discourse about the kinds of activities people engage in when on sick leave. It employs a discursive psychological framework for analysis, drawing heavily on conversation analysis. A Swedish internet forum thread on sick leave is examined, focusing on how the participants describe and account for the things they do when staying home from work due to illness. The analysis suggests that the participants' accounts of their activities delicately manage the legitimacy of their sick leave. In examining how this is done in practice, the analysis makes visible the balancing act between being ill enough to stay home from work and well enough for other activities. In the context of recent debates in Sweden and elsewhere about the legitimacy of sick leave in different situations, the analysis of how legitimacy is actually negotiated is an important concern, making visible the moral work of being on sick leave.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. Vol. 33, no 5, 761-776 p.
sick leave, legitimacy, discursive psychology, conversation analysis, internet forums
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-156966DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9566.2011.01330.xISI: 000292921200009OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-156966DiVA: diva2:435811