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Dr Rachel Jarvie

Lecturer in Sociology


BA (Hons) Contemporary History (University of Sussex) 1992
PGCE (University of Sussex) 1994
MSc Social Research (Distinction) (University of Plymouth) 2010

PhD Sociology (University of Plymouth, 2014)

Professional membership

British Sociological Association
British Sociological Association Teaching Group

British Sociological Association Human Reproduction Study Group
Institute for Learning
Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Teaching interests

BSc Sociology/MSc Social Research
My teaching interests include: the sociology of health and illness (in particular public health discourses, health inequalities); the sociology of human reproduction; qualitative research methods; qualitative data analysis.

Staff serving as external examiners

External Examiner - University of Cumbria

Research interests

ESRC funded Doctoral Ressearch Project entitled:

The Discourses and Lived Experiences of 'Maternal Obesity' and Gestational Diabetes Mellitus (GDM) or Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus in Pregnancy (T2DM)

The research utilises a broadly Foucauldian theoretical framework to explore the discursive terrain pertaining to these medical 'conditions'.  It then phenomenologically explores women's lived experiences of pregnancy complicated by 'obesity', GDM/T2DM and considers how women position themselves with respect to 'expert' medico-scientific/public health and popular media discourses.

Other research

Exploring Multiparous Women's Experiences of being an 'Older' Mother (ESRC funded)

Conference Papers:

November 2010 ‘Experiences of Older Mothers’, South West Region MedSoc Postgraduate Symposium, University of Plymouth

April 2011 ‘Renewing Mothering after the age of 35: “What the hell would you go back to that gain for?”’, British Sociological Association 60th Anniversary Conference, London School of Economics

May 2011 ‘Risk, Responsibility and Resistance in the Narratives of ‘Older’ Mothers’, Reproduction Matters in the 21st Century, University of Plymouth

April 2013 'But I don't mind if my baby's fat': Having a 'BIg Baby' in the age of 'Obesity', British Sociological Association Conference, Grand Connaught Rooms, London

Septamber, 2014 "Maternal Diabesity": The Disconnect between Policy and Practice and the Material Realities of Women's Lives, Medical Sociology Conference, British Sociological Association

January, 2015  "Maternal Diabesity": The Disconnect between Policy and Practice and the Material Realities of Women's Lives, Department of Sociology and Philosophy Seminar, University of Exeter

Peer Reviewed Journals

Jarvie, R et al (2015) "Renewed" "Older" Motherhood/Mothering: A Qualitative Exploration, Journal of Women and Aging, 27 (2), 103-122

Parsons, J & Jarvie, R (2015) Editorial, Special Edition, 'Fat', M/C Journal (Media/Culture) 

Jarvie, R (2016) 'Obese' 'Sumo' Babies, Morality and Maternal Identity, Women's Studies International Forum, 54 p20-28 doi:10.1016/j.wsif.2015.10.004

Online Interview

Aging Horizons Bulletin, Canada