Edited by Ursula Lutzky and Minna Nevala
[Pragmatics & Beyond New Series 306] 2019
► pp. 205–225
This study offers an analysis of medical and emotional identity features put forward by participants asking questions and providing answers in three types of public online diabetes-related interaction in Spanish (frequently asked questions, chat sessions and fora). The results show that many writers present themselves not as diabetics but as relatives of a diabetic, or else refrain from specifying their relation to diabetes. Furthermore, as no shared patient-professional identity is constructed, the healthcare relationship profiled is a rather traditional one. The differing natures of the platforms and genres are reflected in the identities constructed. In the FAQs a more impersonal or collective identity is apparent, whereas that constructed in the forum tends to be more personal, with more emotional aspects; the chat data occupy an intermediate position.