Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Patient Agency in Interpreter-mediated Discourse
by Hodgson, Sonja E., M.A., California State University, Long Beach, 2019, 101; 22582587
Abstract (Summary)

This thesis explores the agency (decision making ability) and resource-seeking behaviors of Spanish-speaking patients of limited English proficiency (LEP) when communicating with a biomedical physician through an interpreter. It aims to understand how power dynamics in these mediated encounters may influence patient agency or the exchange of information regarding healthcare resources (e.g., inpatient, outpatient, or community resources). It clarifies how interpreters are brokering access to resources within the U.S. biomedical healthcare system, as well as how patients and providers gauge the effectiveness of interpreter mediation for obtaining knowledge of/access to appropriate resources. My research seeks answers on how the presence of a cultural and linguistic intermediary (an interpreter, potentially of different ethnicity or race as the patient) during interactions between patient and provider changes power dynamics during communication between parties. This thesis explores these queries from the theoretical framework of practice theory. Methods of data collection include participant observation and semi-structured interviews, and I use Foucauldian discourse analysis to scrutinize findings.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Loewe, Ronald
Commitee: Rousso-Schindler, Steven, LeMaster, Barbara
School: California State University, Long Beach
Department: Anthropology
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 81/4(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Cultural anthropology, Latin American Studies
Keywords: Authoritative Knowledge, Interpreting, Limited English Proficiency (LEP), Linguistic Anthropology, Medical Anthropology, Power Dynamics
Publication Number: 22582587
ISBN: 9781687914286
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