Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Rhetorics, Communication, and Information Design
Dr. Todd May, Committee Chair
Dr. Cynthia Haynes
Dr. Steven B. Katz
Dr. Sarah Winslow
This dissertation examines the relationship between diagnostic communication practices and deliberative rhetoric through the lens of Actor-Network theory and feminist theory. Specifically, I argue that Bruno Latour's Actor-Network Theory (ANT) provides a generative framework for tracing diagnostic networks as it accounts for uncertainty, dispersed agency, community stakeholders, and nonhumans. The chapters explore how a networked approach to diagnosis opens up opportunities to reform doctor-patient relationships, expands our conceptions of diagnostic actants, suggests ways to respond to patients living at risk for disease, and broadens our understanding of ethos in healthcare contexts. Furthermore, I also consider how a networked framework can help us comprehend how public misdiagnoses happen so we can prevent them in the future. I conclude by advocating for healthcare providers to reform diagnostic communication practices to account for the agency and expertise of non-specialist stakeholders, particularly patients. I also explore methods for intervening within global health networks and addressing the intersectional problems they collaboratively solve.
Gay, Kristen, "Post-Diagnosis: A Networked Framework for Narrative Reassemblage" (2017). All Dissertations. 1899.