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Emotional labour: just another buzz word?

Hunter, Billie and Smith, Pam 2007. Emotional labour: just another buzz word? International Journal of Nursing Studies 44 (6) , pp. 859-861. 10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2006.12.015

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Death through pregnancy loss is a tragedy which touches nursing staff as well as parents. Exposed to the intense emotions of parents, nurses must simultaneously manage their own emotions. This paper explores how nurses, through the use of personal narratives, develop and construct meanings around the professionally defined, but personally experienced, event of pregnancy loss. The methodology was based on in-depth interviews with fourteen nurses working in gynaecological units in Northern Ireland. The author, through the exploration of the nurse's perspective, concludes that emotion can be conceived of as a valid resource for professionals when integrated into a nurse's matrix of professional understandings. In addition, the study also demonstrates that value should be attached to emotional work which may not be fully visible, particularly for nurses working in gynaecological units. The emotional needs of nurses need to be fully acknowledged through recognition of the importance of managed emotion in the construction of professional knowledge. There is, therefore, strong justification for supporting the recognition of the importance of emotion in the development of nurse education policies and in valuing aspects of nursing practice that may have been marginalized.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Healthcare Sciences
Subjects: R Medicine > RG Gynecology and obstetrics
R Medicine > RT Nursing
Uncontrolled Keywords: Emotional labour; Nursing; Midwifery; Emotion management
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0020-7489
Last Modified: 10 Jan 2018 07:24

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