Title

“Getting over it” versus “building/continuing a relationship”: Discourse analysis of text regarding the bereavement process

Prize Winner

Streaming Media

Type of Proposal

Oral presentation

Start Date

31-3-2017 9:00 AM

End Date

31-3-2017 10:20 AM

Faculty

Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

Faculty Sponsor

Kim Calderwood

Abstract

As the bereavement literature increasingly indicates that bereaved people do not return to a previous state and often have continuing bonds with the deceased, Western society is becoming aware that the previously understood stages of death proposed by Kubler-Ross (1969) do not fit the bereavement process (Calderwood, 2011). Social media, as a contemporary form of communication about death, is one avenue where bereaved people can express grief in a new, yet not well understood, venue. To increase our knowledge of the bereavement process and how social media is used to experience that process, a systematic review of academic literature on how social media is used for expressions related to bereavement was conducted. The results of 11 peer-reviewed articles and two doctoral dissertations revealed that social media sites are used as a form of memorializing (Carrol & Landry, 2010) and socializing (Brubaker, Hayes, & Dourish, 2013; Church, 2013; Lingel, 2013; Peck, 2012), even strangers socializing with people who knew the deceased (DeGroot, 2014; Marwick & Ellison, 2012). To further contribute to this literature, and to examine the role of continuing bonds after death, the authors conducted a discourse analysis of seven Facebook group pages dedicated to a deceased person 35 years of age or younger who died over four years ago. The findings support the notion of a lengthy bereavement process as well as continuing bonds with the deceased. The presentation will include findings from the systematic literature review, discourse analysis, and lessons learned about qualitative analysis of social media sites.

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Mar 31st, 9:00 AM Mar 31st, 10:20 AM

“Getting over it” versus “building/continuing a relationship”: Discourse analysis of text regarding the bereavement process

As the bereavement literature increasingly indicates that bereaved people do not return to a previous state and often have continuing bonds with the deceased, Western society is becoming aware that the previously understood stages of death proposed by Kubler-Ross (1969) do not fit the bereavement process (Calderwood, 2011). Social media, as a contemporary form of communication about death, is one avenue where bereaved people can express grief in a new, yet not well understood, venue. To increase our knowledge of the bereavement process and how social media is used to experience that process, a systematic review of academic literature on how social media is used for expressions related to bereavement was conducted. The results of 11 peer-reviewed articles and two doctoral dissertations revealed that social media sites are used as a form of memorializing (Carrol & Landry, 2010) and socializing (Brubaker, Hayes, & Dourish, 2013; Church, 2013; Lingel, 2013; Peck, 2012), even strangers socializing with people who knew the deceased (DeGroot, 2014; Marwick & Ellison, 2012). To further contribute to this literature, and to examine the role of continuing bonds after death, the authors conducted a discourse analysis of seven Facebook group pages dedicated to a deceased person 35 years of age or younger who died over four years ago. The findings support the notion of a lengthy bereavement process as well as continuing bonds with the deceased. The presentation will include findings from the systematic literature review, discourse analysis, and lessons learned about qualitative analysis of social media sites.