Ashley lectures in the sociology of health, mental health and illness, social problems, social movements, and in the economics of social policy. Her research explores the rising importance attributed emotions and behaviour in an era of ‘no alternative’ to capitalism. She is particularly interested in ‘vulnerable’ constructions of human subjects in the rhetoric of new social problems. She is the author of Semiotics of Happiness: rhetorical beginnings of a public problem published by Bloomsbury Academic in 2015 and the forthcoming Semiotics of Emotion (2017) which explores rising claims about emotional damage in public debate and social movement campaigns.
Too much, too young: why is policy obsessed with teenage mums?
"The Battle of Ideas is a weekend like no other. I found the 2011 festival immensely stimulating. It gave me a great deal to think about, and a whole new list of books to read - from Virgil to Vygotsky. On to greater battles in 2012!"
Ken Macleod, award-winning science fiction writer; author, The Restoration Game and Intrusion