ERIC Number: ED228154
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Sep
The Development of Feminist Methodology: Ideas and Practice in Three Academic Disciplines.
Cook, Judith A.
Feminist research techniques in sociology, history, and anthropology reveal consistent approaches on how to study women. In all three disciplines, feminist methodology reveals a pervasive lack of information about women's worlds, a bias in the underrepresentation of women researchers, a need to reconceptualize previously investigated phenomena to include women's experiences, and biases in the kind of research questions asked. To resolve these omissions and biases, feminist scholars take techniques in one discipline and apply them to the subject matter of another in order to avoid sexist assumptions of their own field's methods. Examples are the use of linguistic methodologies in sociology, archaeological and ethnohistorical techniques in anthropology, and demographic analysis in history research. Also, feminist methodology duplicates earlier research to evaluate its analysis and explanation (or lack of analysis and explanation) for gender inequality. Finally, feminist research in all three disciplines involves the development and refinement of new methods of data collection. Nontraditional sources, such as women's medical and church records, minutes of women's clubs and voluntary societies, and refined essay questionnaires, are used. In these ways, feminist methodology unveils the distortions of a sexist society while working toward a transformation of the future. (Author/KC)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association (San Francisco, CA, September 6-10, 1982). Revision of earlier papers (1980).