This afternoon, stuck on the Oxford Tube coming out of London, I was reading negative academic related stuff on my twitter timeline. Then my niece forwarded her undergraduate dissertation. She’s just completed a degree in linguistics at Leeds. For her dissertation she did a critical discourse analysis of four documents; Sloven’s public statement on the publication of the Verita report, their briefing document to Monitor, and letters from the CEO and Board Chair to us.
I still don’t fully understand what transitivity is but non-apologies are pretty straightforward. In a kind of a random shambles; human, mother, (proud) aunt, campaigner, academic, raging woman, Oxford Tube captive and probably other identities, I read this dissertation. Between Hillingdon and Lewknor.
I was struck, in particular, by three things. First, it’s an example of an undergraduate dissertation that’s robust, rigorous, relevant and political. I’m impressed by both Ally’s work/focus and the encouragement and support she was obviously given by Leeds.
Second, (and I won’t say much about the content right now) the conclusions are clear, carefully evidenced and show that Sloven (and probably other NHS Foundation Trusts/local authorities) don’t operate anything approaching a whiff of candour, openness and transparency.
Third, if an undergraduate student can produce a clear, critical and well evidenced piece of research demonstrating this, why is so much meaningless talk still being talked?