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GWS407: Debates in Gender Research

Module Aims

  • Introduce students to the practicalities and the philosophies of doing interdisciplinary research in Gender and Women’s Studies.
  • Help students to interpret, understand and explore the consequences of particular research methods.
  • Encourage students to consider the relationship between theories and methods in research.
  • Enable studies to reflect on the politics of knowledge, the ethics of research, and the relationship between disciplines and inter-disciplinary fields such as Gender and Women’s Studies.
  • Explore key conceptual frameworks which have emerged within feminist research, with reference to activism, research practice and theoretical arguments.

Course Approach

Each session will cover one specific debate in Gender and Women’s Studies.  This will be considered with reference to one research project which will be reviewed and critically assessed.


One 5000 word essay pertaining to issues covered in the module.

Indicative Readings

  • Alaimo, S. and Hekman, S. (eds) (2008) Material Feminisms, Bloomington & Indianapolis:  Indiana University Press.
  • Haraway, D. (1996) Modest Witness@Second Millenium. FemaleMan Meets OncoMouse™:  Feminism and Technoscience, New York and London: Routledge. 
  • Letherby, G. (2003) Feminist Research in Theory and Practice, Buckingham:  Open University Press.
  • Maynard, M. and Purvis, J. (Eds.) (1994) Researching the Lives of Women from a Feminist Perspective. Basingstoke: Taylor and Francis.
  • Reinharz, S. (1992) Feminist methods in Social Research, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Warren, C.A.B (1988) Gender Issues in Field Research, London: Sage.
  • Harding, S., Hintikka, M., Tronto, J. (2003) Feminist Methodology, London: Sage.
  • Harding, S. (1991) Whose Science? Whose knowledge? Thinking from Women's Lives, Milton Keynes: Open University Press.
  • Hemmings, C. (2011) Why Stories Matter: the Political Grammar of Feminist Theory, Durham, NC:  Duke University Press.
  • Ramazanoglu, C. with Holland, J. (2002) Feminist Methodology: Challenges and Choices, London: Sage.
  • Ryan-Flood, R. and Gill, R. (2009) Secrecy and Silence in the Research Process: feminist reflections.  London: Routledge.
  • Skeggs, B. (Ed.) (1995) Feminist Cultural Theory: Production and Process. Manchester: Manchester University Press.
  • Fonow, M. M. & Cook, J.A. (Eds) (1991) Beyond Methodology: Feminist Scholarship as Lived Research, Indianapolis: Indiana University Press.
  • H. Roberts (1984) Doing Feminist Research, London: Routledge
  • M. Eichler (1988) Non-Sexist Research Methods: A Practical Guide, London: Unwin and Hyman.
  • Oakley (2000) Experiments in knowing: gender and method in the social sciences, Cambridge, UK:

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