NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1121415
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0951-8398
"Solidarity and Support": Feminist Memory Work Focus Groups with Working-Class Women Studying Social Science Degrees in Australia
Michell, Dee; Beddoe, Liz; Fraser, Heather; Jarldorn, Michele
International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education (QSE), v30 n2 p175-189 2017
This paper reports on our use of a two-phased, feminist memory work in a project conducted with 11 women, social science students at an Australian university. We begin by describing government-led attempts to widen participation in Australian universities because 10 of the 11 women who participated in our project were from "non-traditional" backgrounds. We discuss qualitative group research, identifying some of the benefits and limitations of focus groups, before differentiating them from feminist memory work and analysing key findings. Using excerpts from participants' written stories and oral discussions, we analyse some of the obstacles the women faced trying to complete their studies. Our attention then turns to methodological concerns where we examine memory work as a feminist inquiry method. As second-wave feminists understood several decades ago through their use of consciousness-raising groups, we describe how we derived many benefits from using feminist memory work. The method invites deep reflection on the intersections between the personal and political and can be productive of insights about how people feel, not just think, about their experiences. A sense of solidarity can stem from this awareness amongst participants who have a chance to workshop and thus reinterpret their own stories and those of others, which can mean a growth in self-confidence and a reduction in self-blame.
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A