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Feminist Dilemmas in Qualitative Research
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Feminist Dilemmas in Qualitative Research
Public Knowledge and Private Lives

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December 1997 | 224 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
How can researchers produce work with relevance to theoretical and formal traditions and requirements of public academic knowledge while still remaining faithful to the experiences and accounts of research participants based in private settings? Feminist Dilemmas in Qualitative Research explores this key dilemma and examines the interplay between theory, epistemology and the detailed practice of research. It does this across the whole research process: access, data collection and analysis and writing up research. It goes on to consider ways of achieving high standards of reflexivity and openness in the strategic choices made during research, examining these issues for specific projects in an open and accessible style.

Particular themes examined are: the research dilemmas that occur from feminist perspectives in relation to researching private and personal social worlds; the position of the researcher as situated between public knowledge and private experience; and the dilemmas raised for researchers seeking to contribute to academic discourse while remaing close to their knowledge forms.

 
PART ONE: INTRODUCING OUR VOICES
Rosalind Edwards and Jane Ribbens
Public Knowledge, Private Lives, Personal Experience
Jane Ribbens
Hearing My Own Voice? An Autobiographical Discussion of Motherhood
 
PART ONE: SPEAKING AND LISTENING: REFLECTING MULTILAYERED VOICES
Melanie Mauthner
Bringing Silent Voices into a Public Discourse
Tina Miller
Shifting Layers of Professional, Lay and Personal Narratives
Linda Bell
Public and Private Meanings in Diaries
Janet Parr
Theoretical Voices and Women's Own Voices
 
PART TWO: HEARING AND REPRESENTATNG: REFLECTING THE PRIVATE IN PUBLIC
Miri Song
Hearing Competing Voices
Sibling Research

 
Natasha Mauthner and Andrea Doucet
Reflections on a Voice-Centred Relational Method
Pam Alldred
Representing Voices in Ethnography and Discourse Analysis
Maxine Birch
Re/constructing Research Narratives
Kay Standing
Writing the Voices of the Less Powerful
Research on Lone Mothers

 
Jane Ribbens and Rosalind Edward
Epilogue

`This is an excellent book for both undergraduate and graduate students. It contains some useful tips on technique and some striking quotations. There is also a comprehensive bibliography of feminist writing on a wide range of theoretical and practical topics. The care and thoughtfulness of this collection bring together in a stimulating way the philosopher's questions about representation and the empirical researcher's questions about evidence. Feminist Dilemmas in Qualitative Research is a useful and timely book' - Women's Philosophy Review

`It is indeed refreshing to find serious, dedicated feminist psychologists who write so expressively about their desires, commitments, limitations and difficulties as researchers, and how they choose to address them.... [This book] offers us a rare oppotunity to thrash through these dilemmas and perhaps gain sufficient practice such that when we are again alone in the thorny thickets of research we shall be better prepared.' - Feminism and Psychology

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