1st Edition

A Critical Reflexive Approach to Sex Research Interviews with Men Who Pay for Sex

By Monique Huysamen Copyright 2022
    150 Pages
    by Routledge

    150 Pages
    by Routledge

    A Critical Reflexive Approach to Sex Research is a methodologically focused book that offers rich insights into the, often secret, subjectivities of men who pay for sex in South Africa. The book centres on the interview context, outlining a critical reflexive approach to understanding how knowledge is co-produced by both the interviewer and the participant in research about sex.

    By attending to the complex dynamics of the research interview, this book examines the historic and contemporary relationship between sex work, race, coloniality, sexuality, masculinity, femininity, whorephobia, and discourses of disease and contagion. It draws on both empirical interview data and Huysamen’s entries in her research journal to offer a unique approach to building critical reflexivity into every phase of the research process. The critical reflexive approach uses an assemblage of poststructuralist and psychoanalytic theories and practices which together provide tools to interrogate how interview dynamics facilitate, shape, and restrain the meaning that is produced within the interview. This book will be a valuable resource for anyone interested in researching sex work from intersectional and feminist decolonial perspectives as it probes critical questions surrounding how men make meaning of paying for sex, their motivations for doing so, and how they negotiate their identities in relation to this stigmatised practice. It provides a unique offering to researchers working on sexual, secret, and stigmatised topics, providing them with a specific set of tools and resources to incorporate reflexivity into their own sex research.

    Encouraging the reader to look widely to draw on an array of theories and frameworks across disciplines, this is fascinating reading for students and researchers in critical psychology, research methods, and the social sciences.

    1.Setting the Scene: Researching Men Who Pay for Sex in South Africa 2. An Assemblage of Theories, Methods, and Practice: Towards a Critical Reflexive Approach 3. Reasons for Arriving: Confessions, Excitement, and Intimacy 4. Defenses and Desires in the Research Encounter 5. Out of Africa": Critical Reflexivity as Decolonial Method? 6. Using the Critical Reflexive Approach in Your Research


    Monique Huysamen, PhD, is a researcher at Manchester Metropolitan University. She received her PhD in Psychology from the University of Cape Town, where she now holds an honorary research position. Her research focuses on sexualities, sexual health, and social justice. She has also published on research ethics and critical approaches to doing qualitative research.

    'Useful for anyone interested in sexuality and gender, the process of interviewing is assessed at the micro level which shines a light on complex personal dynamics. Using case studies to illuminate the nature of the interviewer-participant encounter, this reflective account provides an intimate exposé of an area of methodology which is rarely discussed. A must for anyone planning or doing sensitive interviewing'.

    Teela Sanders, Professor of Criminology, University of Leicester, UK