Stigma and self-stigma in addiction

Steve Matthews*, Robyn Dwyer, Anke Snoek

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)
111 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Addictions are commonly accompanied by a sense of shame or self-stigmatization. Self-stigmatization results from public stigmatization in a process leading to the internalization of the social opprobrium attaching to the negative stereotypes associated with addiction. We offer an account of how this process works in terms of a range of looping effects, and this leads to our main claim that for a significant range of cases public stigma figures in the social construction of addiction. This rests on a social constructivist account in which those affected by public stigmatization internalize its norms. Stigma figures as part-constituent of the dynamic process in which addiction is formed. Our thesis is partly theoretical, partly empirical, as we source our claims about the process of internalization from interviews with people in treatment for substance use problems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)275–286
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Bioethical Inquiry
Volume14
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2017
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2017. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.

Keywords

  • Addiction
  • Self-stigmatization
  • Shame
  • Stereotype
  • Stigma

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