Feminist community research is a collaborative, policy-oriented methodology that holds the promise of empowering women and building a more just society. But in the absence of critical analysis and the responsible use of power, this approach can lead to naive or even harmful practices.
Grounded as they are in fieldwork, these interdisciplinary case studies acknowledge the real methodological and ethical issues that researchers can encounter. The authors discuss the strategies – successful and unsuccessful – that they have employed to overcome these problems. The volume addresses the challenges of negotiating contested research relationships in local and global contexts and in relation to concerns such as health care, immigration, and poverty. The authors’ collective experiences working with diverse groups – including formerly incarcerated women, Aboriginal women, and poverty-reduction practitioners in Vietnam – reveal that truly equitable research projects require that we question core concepts and address crucial issues such as the promises and limits of reflexivity; the politics of place, time, and resources; ethical dilemmas and emotional responses; and the way issues of social justice, policy, and social change are embedded in research.
By sharing lessons learned, this volume offers real strategies for researchers and government agencies to build better bridges between research institutions and communities.
This book is an essential read for scholars, students, and policy-makers in women’s studies and health sciences, and a welcome resource for community members working with researchers.
Instead of papering over difference, otherness, and disparity, this book takes these issues head on. Fully engaging the possibilities and conditions of the present, this work addresses the variety of conundrums that permeate efforts toward feminist critical research with policy relevance.
1 Unpacking Relationships in Feminist Community Research: Cross-Cutting Themes / Wendy Frisby and Gillian Creese
2 Community Research from a Post-Colonial Feminist Perspective: Exemplars from Health Research in Canada and India / Joan M. Anderson, Koushambhi Basu Khan, and Sheryl Reimer-Kirkham
3 Feminist Demands, Dilemmas, and Dreams in Introducing Participatory Action Research in a Canada-Vietnam Capacity-Building Project / Leonora C. Angeles
4 Travels with Feminist Community-Based Research: Reflections on Social Location, Class Relations, and Negotiating Reciprocity / Shauna Butterwick
5 Voices from the Street: Sex Workers’ Experiences in Community-Based HIV Research / Jill Chettiar, Mark W. Tyndall, Katharine Chan, Devi Parsad, Kate Gibson, and Kate Shannon
6 Working across Race, Language, and Culture with African and Chinese Immigrant Communities / Gillian Creese, Xin Huang, Wendy Frisby, and Edith Ngene Kambere
7 Tangled Nets and Gentle Nettles: Negotiating Research Questions with Immigrant Service Organizations / Tara Gibb and Evelyn Hamdon
8 Challenging Policies for Lone Mothers: Reflections on, and Insights from, Longitudinal Qualitative Interviewing / Penny Gurstein, Jane Pulkingham, and Silvia Vilches
9 White Cowboy, Black Feminism, Indian Stories / Paul Kershaw
10 Inside and Outside of the Gates: Transforming Relationships through Research / Ruth Elwood Martin, Kelly Murphy, and Marla J. Buchanan
11 Living an Ethical Agreement: Negotiating Confidentiality and Harm in Feminist Participatory Action Research / Colleen Reid, Pamela Ponic, Louise Hara, Robin LeDrew, Connie Kaweesi, and Kashmir Besla
12 Capacity Building Is a Two-Way Street: Learning From Doing Research within Aboriginal Communities / Colleen Varcoe, Helen Brown, Betty Calam, Marla J. Buchanan, and Vera Newman
13 Reflections: Promises and Limits of Feminist Community Research / Gillian Creese and Wendy Frisby
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