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Ten years of Ana. Lessons from a transdisciplinary body of literature on online pro-eating disorder websites

Abstract : This paper is an argumentative review of the scientific literature on online services advocating anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa ('pro-ana' and 'pro-mia') of the last decade. The main question is whether these studies reproduce the traditional divide in the study of eating disorders, between clinical and social science perspectives, with limited mutual exchanges. The article identifies a body of literature of which it investigates contents, methods, and approaches; it also analyzes the network of citations among them. On this basis, it argues that the scientific literature touching on pro-ana websites can be regarded as a single transdisciplinary body of knowledge. What's more, it shows that the literature on computer-mediated sociabilities centred on eating disorders displays different structural characteristics with respect to the traditional, non-Web-related research on eating disorders. In the latter, the social sciences have counterpointed the development of a health-sciences mainstream; in the former, instead, they have played a major role in defining the field, while the health sciences have followed suit.
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Submitted on : Friday, March 30, 2012 - 5:07:29 PM
Last modification on : Friday, April 8, 2022 - 8:16:47 AM
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Antonio A. Casilli, Paola Tubaro, Pedro Araya. Ten years of Ana. Lessons from a transdisciplinary body of literature on online pro-eating disorder websites. Social Science Information, SAGE Publications, 2012, 51 (1), pp.121-139. ⟨10.1177/0539018411425880⟩. ⟨hal-00682318⟩



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