I have never taken performance enhancing drugs and I never will: drug discourse in the Shane Warne case

Lamont-Mills, A. and Christensen, S. (2008) I have never taken performance enhancing drugs and I never will: drug discourse in the Shane Warne case. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports, 18 (2). pp. 250-258. ISSN 0905-7188


This study investigates the discursive management of taking prohibited substances in sport. In particular, it explores how one high-profile athlete, Australian cricketer Shane Warne, accounted for his drug-taking behavior when talking to the media. Discursive psychology (DP) is used as the theoretical and methodological framework to study drug discourses in sport. Emphasis in DP is on making explicit how psychological concepts (e.g., drug explanations) are used in everyday talk to perform certain actions. The research data is Warne's first public press statement concerning his 2003 positive test for hydrochlorothiazide and amiloride. Analysis reveals that Warne constructed his drug taking as not being related to performance enhancement and substantiated this with a history of negative test results. Warne worked up his taking as the result of ignorance rather than deliberate deception. Further, he presented this as a one-off event and not reflective of systematic drug usage. It is argued in this study that to better understand drug taking in sport, sport researchers need to understand how athletes talk about drugs. For it is through talk that most sporting activities are conducted and maintained, and it is this talk that needs to be understood and analyzed.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © 2007 Blackwell Munksgaard. Permanent restricted access to published version in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - Department of Psychology
Date Deposited: 01 Jun 2010 23:43
Last Modified: 12 Oct 2014 23:54
Uncontrolled Keywords: doping in sports; psychology; social; verbal behavior; elite athletes
Fields of Research : 03 Chemical Sciences > 0399 Other Chemical Sciences > 039902 Forensic Chemistry
17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170114 Sport and Exercise Psychology
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1106 Human Movement and Sports Science > 110604 Sports Medicine
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 92 Health > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920414 Substance Abuse
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1111/j.1600-0838.2007.00639.x
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/8247

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