Depression at work, authenticity in question: Experiencing, concealing and revealing

Ridge, D, Broom, A, Kokanovic, R, Ziebland, S and Hill, N 2017, 'Depression at work, authenticity in question: Experiencing, concealing and revealing', Health, pp. 1-18.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

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Title Depression at work, authenticity in question: Experiencing, concealing and revealing
Author(s) Ridge, D
Broom, A
Kokanovic, R
Ziebland, S
Hill, N
Year 2017
Journal name Health
Start page 1
End page 18
Total pages 18
Publisher Sage Publications Ltd.
Abstract Australia and the United Kingdom have introduced policies to protect employees who experience mental illness, including depression. However, a better understanding of the experiential issues workers face (e.g. sense of moral failure) is needed for the provision of appropriate and beneficial support. We analysed 73 interviews from the United Kingdom and Australia where narratives of depression and work intersected. Participants encountered difficulties in being (and performing as if) 'authentic' at work, with depression contributing to confusions about the self. The diffuse post-1960s imperative to 'be yourself' is experienced in conflicting ways: while some participants sought support from managers and colleagues (e.g. sick leave, back-to-work plans), many others put on a façade in an attempt to perform the 'well' and 'authentic' employee. We outline the contradictory forces at play for participants when authenticity and visibility are expected, yet, moral imperatives to be good (healthy) employees are normative.
Subject Sociology not elsewhere classified
Keyword(s) authenticity
depression
disclosure
narrative
support
work
DOI - identifier 10.1177/1363459317739437
Copyright notice © The Author(s) 2017
ISSN 1363-4593
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