Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …


Journal of Cross-Cultural and Interlanguage Communication

Ed. by Piller, Ingrid

6 Issues per year

IMPACT FACTOR 2016: 0.685
5-year IMPACT FACTOR: 0.702

CiteScore 2016: 0.60

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2016: 0.600
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2016: 0.805

See all formats and pricing
More options …
Volume 24, Issue 1-2 (May 2005)


Silence as a means of preserving the status quo: The case of ante-natal care in Ireland

Mary Pat O Malley
Published Online: 2008-10-27 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/mult.24.1-2.39


This paper examines interaction at a midwives’ ante-natal clinic from the perspective of both participants and illustrates how speech and silence interact to construct the experience of ante-natal care in contemporary Ireland. Using a discourse analysis approach, the perspectives of the professionals and that of the women using the service are described, as are contrasting elements of these perspectives. Silence is defined as issues left unspoken, and three main issues are identified: the active role of women in labour, the possibility of alternatives and choices within and to the current system, and women’s subjective experience of pregnancy and birth. Challenges to the status quo through attempts to introduce topics usually left unspoken are also described. Women are shown to be adept at both introducing their perspective and at attempting to introduce a plurality of voices in the discourse. As midwives conduct the tasks at hand, challenges are quickly relinquished and ultimately the status quo of contemporary antenatal care in which the medical model prevails, is left intact.

About the article

Published Online: 2008-10-27

Published in Print: 2005-05-01

Citation Information: Multilingua - Journal of Cross-Cultural and Interlanguage Communication, ISSN (Online) 1613-3684, ISSN (Print) 0167-8507, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/mult.24.1-2.39.

Export Citation

Citing Articles

Here you can find all Crossref-listed publications in which this article is cited. If you would like to receive automatic email messages as soon as this article is cited in other publications, simply activate the “Citation Alert” on the top of this page.

Lorelei Carpenter and Helena Austin
Qualitative Inquiry, 2007, Volume 13, Number 5, Page 660
Shie Sato
Journal of Pragmatics, 2008, Volume 40, Number 7, Page 1249
Joseph Oduro-Frimpong
Journal of Pragmatics, 2011, Volume 43, Number 9, Page 2331

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in