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      Hearing the Unheard: An Interdisciplinary, Mixed Methodology Study of Women’s Experiences of Hearing Voices (Auditory Verbal Hallucinations)

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          Abstract

          This paper explores the experiences of women who “hear voices” (auditory verbal hallucinations). We begin by examining historical understandings of women hearing voices, showing these have been driven by androcentric theories of how women’s bodies functioned leading to women being viewed as requiring their voices be interpreted by men. We show the twentieth century was associated with recognition that the mental violation of women’s minds (represented by some voice-hearing) was often a consequence of the physical violation of women’s bodies. We next report the results of a qualitative study into voice-hearing women’s experiences ( n = 8). This found similarities between women’s relationships with their voices and their relationships with others and the wider social context. Finally, we present results from a quantitative study comparing voice-hearing in women ( n = 65) and men ( n = 132) in a psychiatric setting. Women were more likely than men to have certain forms of voice-hearing (voices conversing) and to have antecedent events of trauma, physical illness, and relationship problems. Voices identified as female may have more positive affect than male voices. We conclude that women voice-hearers have and continue to face specific challenges necessitating research and activism, and hope this paper will act as a stimulus to such work.

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          Giving voice and making sense in interpretative phenomenological analysis

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            Evolving guidelines for publication of qualitative research studies in psychology and related fields.

            We present a set of evolving guidelines for reviewing qualitative research, to serve four functions: to contribute to the process of legitimizing qualitative research; to ensure more appropriate and valid scientific reviews of qualitative manuscripts, theses, and dissertations; to encourage better quality control in qualitative research through better self- and other-monitoring; and to encourage further developments in approach and method. Building on a review of existing principles of good practice in qualitative research, we used an iterative process of revision and feedback from colleagues who engage in qualitative research, resulting in a set of seven guidelines common to both qualitative and quantitative research and seven guidelines especially pertinent to qualitative investigations in psychology and related social sciences. The Evolving Guidelines are subject to continuing revision and should not be used in a rigid manner, in order to avoid stifling creativity in this rapidly evolving, rich research tradition.
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              The characteristic features of auditory verbal hallucinations in clinical and nonclinical groups: state-of-the-art overview and future directions.

              Despite a growing interest in auditory verbal hallucinations (AVHs) in different clinical and nonclinical groups, the phenomenological characteristics of such experiences have not yet been reviewed and contrasted, limiting our understanding of these phenomena on multiple empirical, theoretical, and clinical levels. We look at some of the most prominent descriptive features of AVHs in schizophrenia (SZ). These are then examined in clinical conditions including substance abuse, Parkinson's disease, epilepsy, dementia, late-onset SZ, mood disorders, borderline personality disorder, hearing impairment, and dissociative disorders. The phenomenological changes linked to AVHs in prepsychotic stages are also outlined, together with a review of AVHs in healthy persons. A discussion of key issues and future research directions concludes the review.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                URI : http://frontiersin.org/people/u/80140
                URI : http://frontiersin.org/people/u/284559
                Journal
                Front Psychiatry
                Front Psychiatry
                Front. Psychiatry
                Frontiers in Psychiatry
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                1664-0640
                23 December 2015
                2015
                : 6
                Affiliations
                1Department of Psychiatry, Trinity College Dublin , Dublin, Ireland
                2Department of Cognitive Science, ARC Centre of Excellence in Cognition and Its Disorders, Macquarie University , Sydney, NSW, Australia
                3School of Psychology, University of East London , London, UK
                4Independent Scholar , Dublin, Ireland
                5Department of English, Utah State University , Logan, UT, USA
                6Hill Centre for Women, McLean Hospital , Boston, MA, USA
                7Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School , Boston, MA, USA
                8Department of Media and Communications, Goldsmith’s College , London, UK
                Author notes

                Edited by: Gretchen Hermes, Yale University, USA

                Reviewed by: Bernhard J. Mitterauer, Volitronics-Institute for Basic Research Psychopathology and Brain Philosophy, Austria; Thomas Whitford, University of New South Wales, Australia

                *Correspondence: Simon McCarthy-Jones, s.mccarthyjones@ 123456gmail.com

                Specialty section: This article was submitted to Schizophrenia, a section of the journal Frontiers in Psychiatry

                Article
                10.3389/fpsyt.2015.00181
                4688364
                Copyright © 2015 McCarthy-Jones, Castro Romero, McCarthy-Jones, Dillon, Cooper-Rompato, Kieran, Kaufman and Blackman.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                Page count
                Figures: 0, Tables: 2, Equations: 0, References: 111, Pages: 16, Words: 15434
                Categories
                Psychiatry
                Original Research

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