This paper draws on post-structural feminist theories of emotion to explore the significance of leisure within women's narratives of recovery from depression. I engage with the stories of 48 women in rural and urban Australia to identify the gendered discourses governing depression and recovery. Leisure figured as a site of identity transformation where women enacted creative, embodied, and connected subjectivities. The performance of gender through leisure enabled women to practice a different ethic of care for self and, hence, different relations of care for others. These stories make visible the cost of women's emotion work by identifying how negotiations over leisure and the embodiment of emotion play can facilitate recovery in ways that biomedical treatments cannot.
- leisure-time physical activity
- Social Support
- feminist theories