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‘A Kind of mental warfare’: An economy of affect in the UK debt collection industry

Walker, Carl, Hanna, Paul, Cunningham, Liz and Ambrose, Peter (2014) ‘A Kind of mental warfare’: An economy of affect in the UK debt collection industry. The Australian Community Psychologist, 26 (2). pp. 54-67. ISSN 1835-7393

Item Type: Article


The ‘securitization’ of personal debt has increased the supply of credit and transformed lending patterns to focus on already indebted individuals. This paper draws upon
empirical research with a range of stakeholders in the UK mainstream credit industry in the South of England to interrogate the impact that recent changes to the industry have had on the growing number of revolving debtors. It seeks to contribute to the development of a Critical Community Psychology of debt by providing an account of the ways in which subjectivities and distress are impacted by engagements with financial institutions. Our findings suggest that a series of social, political and economic transformations have laid the grounds for the development of an industry where affective relations are central to the
management of the conduct of a growing number of people. We discuss these findings in terms of the growing literature which explores the complexity of the intersections between
markets and actions, which stem from and are mediated by the body and which posit distress as distributed across a range of sociotechnical apparatuses, sites and markets.

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Depositing User: Liz Cunningham


Item ID: 14147
ISSN: 1835-7393
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Catalogue record

Date Deposited: 15 Nov 2021 17:10
Last Modified: 25 Jan 2022 08:49


Author: Carl Walker
Author: Paul Hanna
Author: Liz Cunningham
Author: Peter Ambrose

University Divisions

Faculty of Education and Society > School of Social Sciences


Social Sciences > Health and Social Care
Psychology > Social Psychology

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