Antonia Lyons

Antonia Lyons profile picture

HoS, School of Health Faculty of Health


Teaching in 2019


BA (Hons) PhD Massey


Antonia Lyons is Professor of Health Psychology and Head of School at the School of Health, Victoria University of Wellington. Antonia has been teaching health psychology at various levels since 1996. Previously she coordinated the Masters in Health Psychology programme at Massey University, and also lectured in health and social psychology at the University of Birmingham, UK. Antonia has published widely on the social and cultural contexts of behaviours related to health and their implications for individual subjectivities, gendered identities and embodied experiences. She is currently a co-editor for the journal Qualitative Research in Psychology and an associate editor for Psychology and Health, and (with Prof Kerry Chamberlain) she co-edits the Routledge book series Critical Approaches to Health. She is a founding member of the International Society for Critical Health Psychology.

Supervision Interests

Research within the broad field of health psychology, particularly projects that take a critical approach (and use innovative methodologies), including:

  • the experiences of health, healthcare and illness
  • popular culture representations of health and illness
  • digital technologies and social media
  • identity, gender and embodiment
  • alcohol consumption and drinking cultures
  • digital marketing and health outcomes

Research Interests

  • People’s experiences of health and illness
  • Femininities and masculinities and implications for health-related behaviour
  • Social and cultural contexts of behaviours related to health and illness
  • Young people’s drinking cultures and the role that social media play
  • Digital alcohol marketing
  • Consumer culture, health and wellbeing

Current Projects

  • Embodied neoliberalism and youth drinking cultures
  • Trans-affirmative health clinic service evaluation (with Dr Terry Fleming, Victoria University of Wellington)

Recently completed supervision and/or research projects

  • Flaunting it on Facebook: Young adults, drinking stories and the cult of celebrity (Marsden funded)
  • Midlife drinking (with Social and Public Health Sciences Group, University of Glasgow)

Current Doctoral projects/student

  • A critical examination of the relationship with alcohol by midlife (35-55) women in NZ. Kate Kersey (current, Victoria University)
  • Alcohol marketing, mobile technologies and young adults’ drinking cultures. Ross Hebden (current, Massey University)
  • Healthy bodies in children’s literature: Constructions and children’s understandings. Ria Pugmire (current, Massey University)
  • ‘Cocktail playdates’- an exploration of alcohol use within motherhood. Michelle Pedersen (current, Massey University).
  • Older men’s experiences of depression. Sam Lindsay (current, Massey University)
  • Medication in daily life: A study on a rural community in Sri Lanka. Supuni Liyanagunawardena (current, co-supervisor, Victoria University)

Current and previous recent Masters projects/students

  • Young people’s representation of alcohol across different social media platforms. Imogen Holmstead-Scott. Current
  • Investigating calls to a health and counselling service. Fiona Grattan, co-supervisor. Current.
  • Exploring young people’s views on why New Zealand adolescents attempt or commit suicide. Casey Williams MSc 2016.
  • The experiences of partners of people transitioning to a different gender. Krystle Chester MA 2016.
  • Masculinity and alcohol in postfeminist popular culture: Teenage boys consume music videos. Samuel Lindsay   MA 2016.
  • Drunk feminine bodies: An exploration of young women’s embodied experiences of intoxication. Alison Ramsay MSc 2015.
  • “If she’s drunk, she’s easy”: Femininity, binge drinking and music videos. Shobna Naomi        MSc 2014.
  • ‘Tubby, like a marshmallow’: The lived experiences of children and their parents as participants in a child weight management programme. Catherine Trezona MSc 2014
  • Photos on Facebook: An exploratory study of their role in the social lives and drinking experiences of New Zealand university students. Anna Tonks MSc 2012.
  • ‘Smile for the camera’: A critical exploration of the meanings of routine ultrasound for pregnant couples. Jessica Glen MSc 2012.
  • “You can tell kind of about the body”: Exploring young children’s talk about bodies, health, fitness and fatness. Ria Pugmire MA 2012.
  • Embodied experience, embodied subjectivity: A phenomenological analysis of the experiences of Māori with chronic pain. Zoe McGavock    MSc 2011.
  • Tertiary student drinking culture, facebook and alcohol advertising: Collapsing boundaries between social life and commercialised consumption. Ross Hebden MA 2011.


View a full list of publications from Antonia Lyons


Teaching in 2019