Whether we think of recovery as a ‘polyvalent concept’ (Pilgrim, 2008) or as a ‘working misunderstanding’ with the attendant ambiguity implied above (Hopper, 2007), it is clear from the preceding chapters that sociologically oriented readers will have much to reflect on. Indeed there is so much to consider that it might be difficult at times to see the wood for the trees, despite the deceptive simplicity of the word. As an ordinary word of the English language, ‘recovery’ can be invested with many meanings for many reasons, which resonates with the interest work of a variety of social groups. These meanings then are framed in accordance with group ambitions and can be thought of therefore as forms of ‘ideology’ within the tradition of Marx or, more ambiguously, forms of ‘discourse’ or ‘discursive practice’ in line with the more recent advice of Foucault.
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