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scope of feminist method in cultural science research

Keywords: feminist research methods, feminist strategy, feminist epistemology

This paper examines the distinctive contribution of your feminist strategy in social research research. The Benefits outlines both historical and future perspectives. The newspaper is then split into two distinctive parts (1) Feminist Research - What this signifies in conditions of social science research, the techniques used alongside the challenges and options engaged. Concluding with the epistemological issues lifted by doing feminist research (2) considers the several perspectives and critique of classic research. This illustrated by appropriate case study examples. Most experts in sociology tend to agree that there is absolutely no single distinctive feminist methodology. There is more a collective awareness that was created from feminist moves in the 1960's and 1970's where a band of women spoken openly, developing a setting of inquiry that challenged the traditional norms of research. These women collectively became known as feminists and enlightened individuals that formed a new basis for knowledge. Although the initial works were conducted outside of an academic setting up, it soon became apparent that there was too little womanly representation in mainstream sociology or interpersonal knowledge. (Devault 1996). Over the last 25 years feminine sociologists have made significant developments in moving back the prejudices against women and on the whole interpreting the workings of society. Feminism was essentially created from a movements and a notion in resolving gender inequalities.

Within the overall statements to male dominance in communal theory, three difficulties have surfaced (i) the criticism against that of feminine knowledge and its' inability to demonstrate enough work that illustrates scientific or neutral knowledge. This led to feminists coming under scrutiny in order to demonstrate talents to rationalise knowledge, perform confirmation, subjectivity and flexibility from political bias. Secondly, how different influences molded women's lives. Cases cited included that of "cultural divisions, social divisions and electric power relations" (Caroline Ramazanolu 2004). The danger here's one of stereotyping and branding women as you gender that delivers a uniform consequence. The third task intertwines that of knowledge and gender whereby in essence women are taken for granted.

In 1987 Sandra Harding (Harding 1987) provided perception into the difference between that of Method, Methodology and Epistemology. She equated Epistemology compared to that of the theory of knowledge with the objective of responding to specific questions. Further, that we now have two specific epistemologies specifically that of a 'Feminist empiricism' and a 'Feminist Standpoint'. The empirical part is the fact that in which a response is provided to bias and traditional responses (Harding 1987). Whereas, standpoint identifies a particular feminist thoughts and opinions founded upon an explanation of knowledge. To be able to understand and complete a feminist standpoint the reader needs to be a little more involved with the "intellectual and political struggles that a women's experience is made after Sandra Harding's views on Standpoint Epistemology targeted more on the principles of objectivity. Harding advocated a fresh idea of 'strong objectivity', instead of that of the poor concept which she known as 'objectivism'. She mentioned that objectivity must contain all public values and passions from the study that is completed. She was aware that one social ideals could adversely impact the study and cause potential distortions. As such Harding viewed traditional research ideas and objectivity as the denial of civilizations best values (knowledge), whereas the new version completely embraces both political and historical origins.

Harding assumed that her new theory contains validity, specifically from the feminist standpoint i. e. women are part of your oppressed group and therefore they plan research problems in a less arbitrary way. They are more likely to evaluate theories that might otherwise be overlooked or refused by more traditional concepts or viewpoints. Harding states that that the standpoint has a substantial foundation in the empirical experiences of women and although this may well not constitute a basis of knowledge, nonetheless it does create a more diverse contribution leading towards increased objectivity. " (Stanley 1990).

Historically the most typical expression of feminine action has been associated with that of liberation and the emancipation of women. It has ranged from the idea of radical insistence, to clarifying the purpose of research and eventually to transformation in terms of politics action. It had been Maria Mies that proposed feminist research should be regular with the overall politics goals and aspirations of women. Hence, there has to be a complete integration of sociable and politics; action appropriate to the emancipation of women. (Mary Margaret Fonow, Beyond methodology: feminist scholarship as resided research 1991).

FEMINIST RESEARCH

Feminist research can essentially be defined as research conducted with what has become known as 'feminists', essentially pulling upon encounters of ladies in what is perceived as a man dominated world. The objective of research is situated the creation of useful knowledge in order to make added contributions by different perspectives of thought. Feminism is situated after a praxis of women showing the same plan with men and conquering the struggle in accordance with gender, competition and class. The building blocks of this really was built in the 1980's. Feminist research has since become more focused how the lives of women have become materially transformed by men and the development of strategies in order to resist this process (Mary Maynard 2005).

Feminist research on the whole terms has had too little agreement to what precisely identifies feminist theory and practice. So there is not really a solitary unifying theory. It had been Patricia Maguire (Breyton 1997) that offered the idea that feminism is (i) A knowledge and belief that women face some form of oppression (ii) A commitment to understand feminine oppression and exploitation in all of its forms (iii) A commitment towards elimination of all forms of female oppression. (Breyton 1997).

FEMINIST METHODS IN SOCIAL Technology RESEARCH: Feminist methods may have four main targets: (i) the capability to uncover and overcome types of bias in research (ii) The capability to identify and create interpersonal change (iii) an idea or method to illustrate human diversity (iv) An acknowledgement of the credentials and position of the researcher. In order to create cultural change any method must include and value the members as change agents. The method needs to acknowledge diversity which not absolutely all women see the social world in the same way e. g. the method method of interviews and inquiry that explore the experience of different religions. (Sprague 2005)i. e. proof has been provided to support theory presented.

Feminist studies use both qualitative and quantitative research techniques, although qualitative research is more immediately used. The word methodology relates to more of an activity of how to carry out research i. e. what you ought to select, empirical research of what to observe, what things to measure as well as how to conduct analysis. The technique id more related to the complete technique of undertaking the analysis. (Sprague 2005) A assumption has been that strategy and epistemology are indistinguishable. This has created a comparatively narrow technical methodology towards carrying out and doing research. The concept of methodology essentially starts the way for doing choice i. e. the implications of what we should do and how we might undertake it. It helps questions on data collection and assimilation. As a result methodology paves the way for critical reflection and creativeness within the interpersonal sciences.

THE Issues AND CHOICES: Feminist researchers have taken completely different approaches to the adoption of strategy. As such they may have adopted differing means to the acquisition and validation of knowledge. This has tended to lean towards a far more scientific and evidential bottom of showing knowledge. This has avoided the much more serious problems of refuting feminist research and rejecting it on the basis that it contains no methodical method. The example being the analysis into child abuse, as a result it never becomes a clear cut case but includes many complex hues of grey which is almost always disputable. In many situations feminist research workers are particularly susceptible in this regard. (Caroline Ramazanolu 2004).

In current conditions it's important to discover that a large variety of women are used in science, engineering and educational positions. So they provide a diverse selection of opinions on a variety of subject matter. The female positions tend to have two unique types of target (i) that involved with the sciences and (ii) that focused upon society. Experts have surfaced from previous marginalised groups and as such have had a serious way of changing the style of inquiry and thought process. You may still find those however that holds the judgment that feminism is a risk to the objectivity of technology. Sandra Harding pointed out that if all knowledge is socially built it will present a major hazard and obstacle to science. For example with most experts "the idea that their views of the natural world are subjective is counter with their professional training". (Wyer 2008) It's important to note that the feminist experts have made a substantial impact over the last thirty years. It has included a substantial contribution to methodologies in the public sciences; particularly responding to the task of how women have been silenced in both culture and research. The feminists have obtained significant success in bringing about interpersonal change and building a degree of equity in both professional and personal lives. Whilst much of the success has been around the first world countries, there still remains a substantial challenge for ladies in the 3rd world and those emerging economies. In particular the local women of Africa, the women in the Islamic communities yet others in the rising countries like India and China.

LEADING Efforts: Early contributions in the 1970's were made by feminist sociologists that are the likes of Marcia Millman and Rosebeth Moss Kanter. They made a number of suppositions in sociology that centered on issues or problems with existing use of sociological methods. Essentially they objected to how assumptions to sociological ideas manifested themselves. They challenged the empirical views of man sociologists and shown a new eyesight as seen solely from the feminine perspective. (Harding 1987).

The researcher and author Carol Gilligan [In another type of tone: Psychological Theory and Women's Development] arranged the point that normal theorists are incorrect to dismiss the knowledge of women on grounds of lower maturity. Gilligan asked that we listen to ladies in their different views and not try to compartmentalize them but credit women for the significant contributions over many disciplines in the sciences and the arts. (Harding 1987).

Evelyn Fox Keller acquired completed a great deal of cutting edge work that revealed sexual bias in the sciences. She expected that women needed to be careful in rejecting principles of objectivity and rationality as they might not be thought to be the symbols for creating a fresh frontier but were much more likely to be doomed and marginalized outside of the political mainstream. Fox herself later found herself in the dilemma of having to choose between feminism and technology. Fox mentioned that a lot more we questioned technique the higher it generated paperwork on epistemology and therefore strategy became an end-in-itself. (Winnie Tomm 1989).

Maria Mies (McDonald 2004)figured "the quantitative study method is itself not free from androcentric bias", further "there is a contradiction between the prevalent ideas of social technology, technique and the politics goals of women" (McDonald 2004). Meis argued that if we revert to these old traditional principles they'll again be converted into instruments of repression - "new wine should not be poured into old containers" (McDonald 2004)

One of the very most influential people in neuro-scientific standpoint epistemology was that of Dorothy E Smith. Smith is famous throughout the world as a programmer of theories and therefore she's advanced the academic position from a feminist standpoint. Smith developed ideas and concepts around the topic matter of gender and especially that of the 'ruling text messages' of man. She advocated that many texts were compiled from the male point of view and as such were responsible for determining gender. She further advocated that such guidelines written by men determined the guidelines of modern culture and defined how we live and conduct our lives. Amongst the books that Smith referenced were the united states Constitution, The Holy Bible and the Communist Manifesto. Smith mentioned that the rulings described in many of these literature were completely opposing to the manner in which women conducted their lives today. Such obsolescence creates the way for change of considering and revision in these areas. - Ryan B Johnson (Johnson, Standpoint Epistemology Brief summary 2010).

EPISTEMOLOGICAL ISSUES OF FEMINIST RESEARCH:

Epistemology of feminist research broadly refers to the value of knowledge or the technological method applied to be able to conduct the study. A good example being that of empirical or qualitative research. Among the important issues pertains to the deviation between quantitative and qualitative techniques in feminist research. The historical connection that exists between the two research methods have been recorded; however the rational associations remain debateable. As a result feminist methodology can't be firmly anchored to either camp of quantitative or qualitative style of research.

Gilligan remarked that qualitative research symbolizes the tone of voice that is most consistent with feminine research values. Similarly the researchers often use the point of view of the 'different words', this being done in order to provide the difference between that of a male opinionated voice. The female tone of voice wanting to be a lot more evident in defining in this is of connection and interactions. Mie's mentioned that because women have been amply trained in repression they may have better objectivity than men in this subject area. That is apparent when they get excited about researching exploited organizations. Essentially women have significantly more empathy and have the ability to better understand the important issues in another light or perspective. (Janet Holland 2010).

There is also the concept of stereotyping all women as feminists. Many female analysts have been generally trained in traditional qualitative methodologies and even though they could have alternative or other views are most likely to revert to the original methods of carrying out research. Psychologist Laurie Rudman has completed research that has changed the views on negative stereotyping of women. Rudman's research discovered that negative stereoptypes of women are incredibly wide-spread and even include educated young women. Her research further substantiated that "strong independent women have gratifying intimate lives and their men are happy too - instead of the widely presented convention that feminists are man hating harpies" (Branson 2007)

SUMMARY PERSPECTIVES

Female analysts have made lots of distinctive contributions to feminist methodologies in sociable science research. It remains questionable however as to whether a definite feminist methodology exists, rather it is an approach to which female research workers have enlivened the issue by providing fresh perspectives and valuable new information, in that way challenging traditional methods. There were some outstanding contributions to social science research from leading female experts - "Goelting and Fernstermaker, 1995; Orlans and Wallace, 1994 and Thorpe and Laslett, 1997" are to mention but a few. (DeVault 1999)

Many sociologists concur that the original feminist movement acquired a core aim of changing the method of consciousness that was historically rooted in ideas of empirical research. Women became more alert to an alternate bottom part for knowledge and the concept of adding 'the women's experience' in to the methodology deployed. The early movement thereby outlined the omission of the perspective. In addition, the group highlighted the racism that was faced by African/People in the usa in the USA and how white women got an advantage in obtaining academic research careers. From these early beginnings female analysts have learnt to react to the problems in communal sciences and increase the overall field of inquiry.

The female methodology has been compared to that of 'excavators' (DeVault 1999)where feminine researchers have been used to identify gaps or absent components in research or whatever has been disregarded. The unique tone of women often lends itself to a far more empathetic approach to those delicate research areas i. e. child maltreatment, drug or drug abuse, juvenile criminal offense etc. This often results a more all natural and complete enquiry than would in any other case have been obtained from the traditional male dominated approach. (DeVault 1999).

The emancipation of women in social science would provide women with an elevated understanding of their own communal circumstances within modern culture. Any feminist strategy therefore must be grounded in objectivity in communal research. The feminist activity, in achieving liberal values, should never itself become a musical instrument of repression from the male community. As a result the concept moves beyond strategy to more of a process of transformational change and make research more inclusive and objective. Feminist research is therefore aimed at the liberation of women. In reaching these aims they boost the platform of knowledge and add value to the overall method methodology in cultural research and inquiry. (Mary Margaret Fonow, 1991). "All the good people, male and feminine, are feminists. The only people who are not feminists are those who believe women are inherently inferior or undeserving of the admiration and opportunity afforded men. Either you are a feminist or you are a sexist/misogynist. There is no box proclaimed 'other'. - Ani DiFranco". (M. P. Johnson 2005).

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