This thesis reports the results of a study of stories told by mid-life career women with cancer in Calgary, 2003. An interpretivist approach is used to increase understanding about the role of communication in the social construction of survival. This research focuses on the socially constructed self displayed in dialogic communication. Using narrative methodology and drawing on a corpus of 6 patient-to-patient interviews, this paper demonstrates that: (a) interpersonal communication in narrative forms constitute self identity, and (b) storytellers actively construct moral identities following cancer experience. Drawing on aspects of narrative identity advocated by Ricouer (1984 & 1992) and moral identity advocated by Gergen (1998) I illustrate how narrative methodology may be applied to examine how people deal with cancer by telling stories. This research reveals that post-modem narratives link the mind, the self, and society and enable people to deal with cancer by constructing moral identities for the self.
Bibliography: p. 89-94