Skip to Content
New information following the change in COVID-19 alert levels. massey.ac.nz/coronavirus
Contact details +64 (04) 801 5799 ext. 63621
I am a Professor in Critical Health Psychology, located in psychology, but drawing on sociology, cultural and media studies to explore the psychological impact of neoliberalism, addressing questions of gender, embodiment, health, youth culture and citizenship. I have been funded by the EU, ESRC, EPSRC, British Academy, Canadian Social Sciences and Research Council and charities. My work includes the co-authored books Critical Bodies (Palgrave, 2008), Technologies of Sexiness (Oxford University Press, USA, 2014) and Postfeminism & Health (Routledge, 2018), I am currently writing Postfeminism & Body Image (Routledge), and am the Vice-Chair for the International Society for Critical Health Psychology.
qualitative methods, identity, subjectivity, discourse analysis, neoliberalism, gender, postfeminism, masculinity, body image, healthy life style change, feminism, digital subjectivity, social study of alcohol and drug use, consumerism, youth cultures and citizenship
21st Century Citizenship, Health and Well-being
Field of research codes
Gender Psychology (170105): Health, Clinical and Counselling Psychology (170106): Psychology (170100): Psychology And Cognitive Sciences (170000): Social and Community Psychology (170113)
qualitative methods, identity, subjectivity, discourse analysis, neoliberalism, gender, postfeminism, masculinity, body image, life style change, feminism, digital subjectivity, social study of alcohol and drug use, consumerism, youth cultures and citizenship
My teaching is informed by social constructionism, supporting students to take a critical standpoint towards taken for granted knowledge, understanding knowledge as socio-historically located and produced through social processes, which ultimately structures our possibilities for thought and action. Social constructionists recognize ‘polyvocality’ (that there are always multiple ways of understanding an issue) and that these understandings both open up and close down possibilities in what we can say, think and do. I engage in research led teaching by using my understanding of social constructionist approach to teach students critical thinking, because it helps them conceptualise knowledge, not as a series of facts to be built up over three years at university, but as ideas for how the world works, and thus part of a human endeavor of sense making that may be evaluated in terms of what it allows people say, think and do at a particular location in time and space. I am able to do this within a scientific discipline so that students both understand the value and concepts behind a scientific paradigm, while learning to conceptualize knowledge as produced by humans within a particular social context.
I specialise in teaching critical pschology, qualitative methods and in teaching through problem based learning.
I am coauthor in the following qualitative methods text books
Sullivan, C. & Forrester, M. (Eds). (2019).Doing Qualitative Research in Psychology: A Practical Guide. London: Sage. 2nd ed.
Sullivan, C., Gibson, S. & Riley, S. (Eds.) (2012). Doing Your Qualitative Psychology Project. London: Sage
I am an experienced graduate supervisor. Doctoral students supervised outside of Massey include:
Wendy Sims Schoulten, Discourses of mothering, University of Bath, UK
Adrienne Evans, Postfeminism, consumerism and neoliberalism, University of Bath, UK
Alison Mackiewicz, Postfeminist drinking cultures, University of Bath, UK
Craig Owen, Masculinity and dance, University of Bath, UK
Martine Robson, Lifestyle advice after coronary heart disease diagnosis, Aberystwyth University UK
Saffron Passam, Graduate identities in higher education, , Aberystwyth University UK
Nikki Edeh, Experiences of Nigerian nurses working in the NHS, Aberystwyth University UK