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social construction of breast and prostate cancer policy

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Date Issued:
2010
Summary:
Breast and prostate cancers are the most commonly diagnosed forms of cancer in women and men in the United States. The federal government has played an active role in dedicating resources toward breast and prostate cancers since the early 1990s, when policy actors successfully lobbied Congress to adopt policies that increased awareness and spending. Using theories of social construction, I argue that the key to their success was the ability of these policy actors to socially construct the illnesses of breast and prostate cancers into politically attractive public issues that appealed to federal policymakers. Through the use of embedded collective case study and content analysis of newspaper coverage and congressional data, this dissertation demonstrates how the social constructions of these illnesses impacted the way that breast and prostate cancers were treated as they moved through the policy process. The way in which social construction influenced the types of policies that were adopted to deal with these illnesses is also examined. Because social construction is a multidimensional and dynamic process, several different elements of this process were examined in this dissertation: the ways that policy actors attracted attention to these illnesses, how gender influenced advocacy efforts, the symbolic aspects of these illnesses, and the way the illnesses were defined on systemic and institutional agendas. Since this dissertation examines two different policy issues, the similarities and differences in breast and prostate cancer policymaking were analyzed. I found that discussing breast and prostate cancers in relation to their social constructions provides support for the importance of symbolism and non-rational policy-making processes.
Title: The social construction of breast and prostate cancer policy.
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Name(s): Martinez, Jocilyn.
College for Design and Social Inquiry
School of Public Administration
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Electronic Thesis Or Dissertation
Issuance: monographic
Date Issued: 2010
Publisher: Florida Atlantic University
Physical Form: electronic
Extent: xiii, 361 p.: ill.
Language(s): English
Summary: Breast and prostate cancers are the most commonly diagnosed forms of cancer in women and men in the United States. The federal government has played an active role in dedicating resources toward breast and prostate cancers since the early 1990s, when policy actors successfully lobbied Congress to adopt policies that increased awareness and spending. Using theories of social construction, I argue that the key to their success was the ability of these policy actors to socially construct the illnesses of breast and prostate cancers into politically attractive public issues that appealed to federal policymakers. Through the use of embedded collective case study and content analysis of newspaper coverage and congressional data, this dissertation demonstrates how the social constructions of these illnesses impacted the way that breast and prostate cancers were treated as they moved through the policy process. The way in which social construction influenced the types of policies that were adopted to deal with these illnesses is also examined. Because social construction is a multidimensional and dynamic process, several different elements of this process were examined in this dissertation: the ways that policy actors attracted attention to these illnesses, how gender influenced advocacy efforts, the symbolic aspects of these illnesses, and the way the illnesses were defined on systemic and institutional agendas. Since this dissertation examines two different policy issues, the similarities and differences in breast and prostate cancer policymaking were analyzed. I found that discussing breast and prostate cancers in relation to their social constructions provides support for the importance of symbolism and non-rational policy-making processes.
Identifier: 608678901 (oclc), 1927310 (digitool), FADT1927310 (IID), fau:2949 (fedora)
Note(s): by Jocilyn Martinez.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Florida Atlantic University, 2010.
Includes bibliography.
Electronic reproduction. Boca Raton, Fla., 2010. Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Subject(s): Breast -- Cancer -- Patients -- Services for
Prostate -- Cancer -- Patients -- Services for
Health services accessibility -- Government policy
Medical policy -- United States
Held by: FBoU FAUER
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/FAU/1927310
Use and Reproduction: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/
Host Institution: FAU