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Insights Into Medical Communication

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Edited By Maurizio Gotti, Stefania Maria Maci and Michele Sala

This book analyses the subject of medical communication from a range of innovative perspectives, covering a broad spectrum of approaches and procedures that are particularly significant in this field.
In this volume, medical communication is analyzed from various viewpoints: not only from a merely linguistic angle, with a focus on the description of the genres used in medical and healthcare contexts, but also from a social and cultural standpoint, with an emphasis both on the doctor-patient relationship and on the social relevance of the other types of communicative links existing between the many communities involved in this type of interaction.
The study of some of the main fields typical of medical communication has highlighted a considerable variety of themes, data and research methods which are clearly representative of the eclectic interest in this specific domain and of the wide range of approaches developed for its investigation.
As the various chapters show, linguistic analysis proves to be highly applicable to textualizations involving multiple interactions and practices, and several kinds of participants, including different healthcare professionals, trainees and patients.
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The Representation of Gambling in Gambling Awareness Campaigns: The Discursive Construction of Addiction

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1.  Introduction

Over the past three decades, as gambling opportunities have expanded around the world, gambling has received increasing attention on the part of clinicians and researchers. While it is generally acknowledged that not all gambling falls within the definition of a medical condition, pathological gambling was recognized as a psychiatric disorder in the 1980s, when it was included in the influential American Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-III). In the 1990s the DSM-IV significantly reworked the diagnostic criteria, de facto sanctioning the inclusion of gambling among chronic and progressive mental illnesses. According to recent research, gambling disorders may affect 0.2-5.3% of adults worldwide, often with a prevalence of comorbidity with mental health, poor learning outcomes and social problems (Ferguson/Couklson/Barnett 2011). Measurement and prevalence vary, but it is undeniable that problem gambling has become a very public concern and, as such, the object of policy intervention, not least in the form of awareness and prevention campaigns, many of which targeted at youths (Byrne et al. 2005). At the same time, gambling also represents a source of state income in many countries, resulting in conflicting interests being at play in communication about gambling in general, and warnings about potential gambling addictions in particular.

This chapter investigates the discursive construction of gambling in selected English-language gambling-awareness campaigns recently issued in different countries around the world. The study analyses the communicative strategies deployed in the campaigns with a view to ← 269 | 270 → identifying their discursive,...

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