Women of Maghrebi Origins’ Constructions of Well-Being in France: A Foucauldian Discourse Analysis

Prof Doc Thesis

Berteau, S. 2020. Women of Maghrebi Origins’ Constructions of Well-Being in France: A Foucauldian Discourse Analysis. Prof Doc Thesis University of East London School of Psychology https://doi.org/10.15123/uel.88408
AuthorsBerteau, S.
TypeProf Doc Thesis

The aim of the study is to explore how women of Maghrebi origins construct well-being in France, by adopting a Foucauldian Discourse Analysis (FDA).
In the first chapter, a critical review of the literature is offered, which highlights how ethnic minorities’ well-being is produced. Constructions of Muslim/Maghrebi women as depicted in society and literature and analysed through a poststructuralist perspective. To understand the conditions of possibility out of which these constructions have emerged, the social, cultural and political context is presented. A brief historicity of migration from the Maghreb is outlined.
A moderate social constructionist epistemological position was adopted throughout this thesis in order to allow for the exploration of the constructed nature of well-being. In line with FDA, discourses and subject positions taken up and resisted by women of Maghrebi origins are identified and described. Implications for subjectivity and practices are presented. Processes of subjectification and technologies of the self are attended to.
The study then presents the analysis which made use of semi-structured interviews to explore how eight women of Maghrebi origins construct well-being. The transcripts were analysed using FDA. This research identified that women of Maghrebi origins construct well-being in three main ways. They produced well-being by positioning themselves within western knowledges. Simultaneously, they made sense of well-being by drawing upon Maghrebi/Islamic traditions. And lastly, well-being was generated by amalgamating both western and Maghrebi/Western discourses. Women of Maghrebi origins equally created coping strategies to enhance well-being. In this sense, multifaceted ways of constructing well-being co-exist.
This research recommends that counselling psychology should be exported to France in order to encourage the development of more pluralistic and intercultural approaches.

PublisherUniversity of East London
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.15123/uel.88408
File Access Level
Publication dates
Online24 Jul 2020
Publication process dates
SubmittedSep 2019
Deposited24 Jul 2020
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