Edoardo Zulato, MSc Social and Cultural Psychology
Coming from Italy, I completed an MSc in Psychology of Social, Decisional Processes and Economic Behaviour in Milan. After having worked as a researcher for both the private and public healthcare, I realised that I wanted to explore and gain tools for researching in a more and more multicultural world. For this reason, I decided to move to London and attend the MSc in Social and Cultural Psychology at the LSE. I am currently doing a PhD at the University of Milano-Bicocca with the aim to understand how different people, societies and cultures shape and build social realities.
Understanding a liminal condition: Representing the “Vegetative State” in Italian, Indian and UK news.
Supervisor: Martin W. Bauer
The vegetative state is a clinical condition in which a patient is wakeful without being aware. By creating a liminal state between life and death, this condition brings about ontological, medical and ethical dilemmas, such as the understanding of an ambiguous reality by both experts and lay-people, the formulation of a clear diagnosis and the end-of-life decision-making. Although many studies so far have tried to answer the aforementioned concerns focusing on caregivers’ and health professionals’ perspectives, none of them has taken into account the role of media in the construction of these perspectives. The present research aims to (1) assess the coverage of the vegetative state across different contexts and time (i.e. salience) and (2) to explore the social representations of the vegetative state in the news across different socio-cultural context (India, Italy and the United Kingdom) and different social milieus (left-leaning, right-leaning and religious/tabloid newspapers). Both qualitative and quantitative text analyses were conducted on articles’ headlines and texts taken from Indian (n=300), Italian (n=300) and British (n=300) newspapers published between 1st of January 1990 and 31st of June 2019. Overall, it emerged that the vegetative state is represented through eight different frames. Moreover, different representational templates were found across both different socio-cultural context and social milieus. In particular, political, religious and quality dimensions were identified as relevant in the construction of different representations of the vegetative state.