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Feminist Methodologies for Critical Researchers
Bridging Differences, Second Edition
This accessible text on social research methodology teaches students of sociology and related disciplines how standard methods can be adapted toward critical ends. The second edition has been updated throughout to incorporate the latest critical scholarship, enhanced discussion of qualitative methods, new material on global issues, sex/sexuality/gender, new discussion of intersectionality, how social media can shape research, and more.
Author Joey Sprague describes and evaluates a wide array of methodological options—from quantitative to qualitative—and explores the links between epistemology and methodology. She proposes a program to overcome bias in standard methodologies and offers practical suggestions that can be used effectively by all progressive researchers. The second edition of
Feminist Methodology for Critical Researchers
is of value to scholars across disciplines and an essential text or supplement for methods classes.
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Size: 6 1/4 x 9 1/2
978-1-4422-1871-0 • Hardback • March 2016 •
978-1-4422-1872-7 • Paperback • March 2016 •
978-1-4422-1873-4 • eBook • March 2016 •
Social Science / Methodology
Social Science / Feminism & Feminist Theory
Social Science / Research
Social Science / Women's Studies
Sociology; Race/Class/Gender; Gender
Sociology; Theory & Methods; Research Methods
Sociology; Women's Studies; Introduction to Women's Studies
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is professor of sociology at the University of Kansas and president and executive officer of Sociologists for Women in Society. An award-winning teacher and nationally respected scholar, she is also an editor for Rowman & Littlefield’s Gender Lens Series.
The Field of Vision
Who Am I?
What Is Methodology?
What’s Keeping Sociology from Its Promise?
Seeing through Science: Epistemologies
Positivism: Do the Facts Speak for Themselves?
Radical Social Constructionism: Is Knowledge Illusion?
Critical Realism or Standpoint Theory?
Critically Seeking Reality
Authority and Power
Power and Authority, Ideology and Knowledge
The Subjectivist (MIS)Interpretation of Standpoint Epistemology
Social Standpoint Epistemology
How Feminists Count: Critical Strategies for Quantitative Methods
Problems with Standard Quantitative Methodology
How Feminists Use Quantitative Methods
Qualitative Shifts: Feminist Strategies in Field Research and Interviewing
Feminist Critiques of Qualitative Methodology
Increasing the Researcher/Researched Connection
Compensating for the Researcher’s Standpoint
Whose Questions? Whose Answers?
Asking Critical Questions
To Whom Are We Providing Answers?
Changing Sociology/ Changing the World
Changing Our Discipline
Joey Sprague is a major theorist in the field of feminist methodologies and theory, and her work is very accessible to students. The scope of
is great for framing why feminist methodologies and feminist theory are necessary in scholarship.
Elizabeth Myers, Smith College
This book is a wonderful contribution to the field of feminist methodologies. Sprague does an excellent job of making readers aware of the differences among human populations along the lines of race, class, gender, and sexual orientation. Most importantly, this text forces us to think about how marginalized communities have been treated in knowledge production, and how these differences construct the relationship between the researcher and the researched.
Joyce M. Barry, Hamilton College
is the best introductory book for teaching research. It’s clear, jargon-free, and manages to make complex ideas and concepts—many rooted in critical theory—accessible for graduate and undergraduate students. I have found this book to be both very useful and simple to understand.
Margo Okazawa-Rey, Fielding Graduate University
The first edition of Joey Sprague’s book has always been required reading in graduate courses I teach. There simply is no other book like it. The second edition improves on an already exceptional book. This book is a must-read for any critical researcher and, more broadly, any social scientist. The issues of epistemology, methodology, and methods transcend feminist research and should be required reading for anyone concerned with how power and biases shape our understandings of how we build knowledge, as well as influence how we come to understand the world around us.
Tiffany Taylor, Kent State University
Previous edition praise: Sprague writes exceptionally clearly and expresses difficult issues in language that undergraduates can easily grasp. At the same time, her ideas are sufficiently sophisticated that readers who are well read in feminist research in sociology also have a great deal to gain from reading this book.
Sociologists For Women In Society
Previous edition praise: Sprague presents her work in a scholarly manner that is accessible to all readers, regardless of their level of competence in feminist methodologies. Her approach allows readers to think critically about feminist issues and the ways they can contribute to the field in the future. . . As mentioned, it presents a valuable framework for any researcher to use in community-based research.
Sex Roles: A Journal of Research
Previous edition praise: Sprague writes exceptionally clearly and expresses difficult issues in language that undergraduates can easily grasp. At the same time, her ideas are sufficiently sophisticated that readers who are well read in feminist research in sociology also have a great deal to gain from reading this book. . . Sprague has given us a vision of standpoint methodology that has come of age.
Gender & Society
Shows readers the power of research methods and offers numerous real-life examples showing the impact of methodology
Illustrates the thorny issues of politics and values connected to research approaches
Explains the nuances of methodology and epistemology in accessible language
Highlights the potential of research to make a positive impact on society
Offers practical suggestions for quantitative and qualitative researchers
“Sprague writes exceptionally clearly and expresses difficult issues in language that undergraduates can easily grasp. At the same time, her ideas are sufficiently sophisticated that readers who are well read in feminist research in sociology also have a great deal to gain from reading this book...Sprague has given us a vision of standpoint methodology that has come of age.”—
Gender and Society
(for the first edition)
New examples throughout, including new exemplars of feminist quantitative research, feminist qualitative research, and new questions and answers
Updated discussion of the state of sociology, post-colonial critiques, critical realism, standpoint epistemology, and more
New material on trends impacting research, such as the increasing use of cellphones over landlines and the growing reach of social media
Fresh examples show excellent feminist research in action, profiling research on the connection between “pro-family policies” and marriage, whether the gender gap in income is actually a motherhood gap, the factors that influence how we shop, and more
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