Imagining Malignancy: Tales on Cancer Survivor Networks
Cancer produces complex reactions among patients, care-givers and survivors. All three categories of people tend to informationalize the disease process, thereby reproducing the dominant medical discourse. The hospital/doctor, the people around, and finally, the net in the form of chat, message boards and groups function to turn the person afflicted by malignancy into a complex ‘body of information’. This paper seeks to understand how the cancer body is explained on message boards on select Cancer Survivor Networks. It argues that admittance to cancer communities requires certain (specialized) knowledge about the disease and the processes of cure, and that the process of describing the disease is also a process of disciplining the pain and trauma of treatment, and in cases, death of a loved one.
Keywords: Cancer, Online Communities, Discourses
Dr Sarma Cvs
Lecturer in Communication, Dept. of Communication, University of Hyderabad