Difficult Conversations : A Feminist Dialogue book cover
1st Edition

Difficult Conversations
A Feminist Dialogue

  • Available for pre-order on March 3, 2023. Item will ship after March 24, 2023
ISBN 9780367542603
March 24, 2023 Forthcoming by Routledge
304 Pages 12 B/W Illustrations

FREE Standard Shipping
SAVE $32.00
was $160.00
USD $128.00

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

This book explores ‘difficult conversations’ in feminist theory as an integral part of social and theoretical transformations.

Focusing on intersectionality within feminist theory, the book critically addresses questions of power and difference as a central feminist concern. It presents ethical, political, social, and emotional dilemmas while negotiating difficult conversations, particularly in terms of sexuality, class, ‘race’, ethnicity, and cross-identification between the researcher and researched. Topics covered include challenging cultural relativism; queer marginalisation; research and affect; and feminism and the digital realm.

This book is aimed primarily at students, lecturers and researchers interested in epistemology, research methodology, gender, identity, and social theory. The interdisciplinary nature of the book is aimed at reaching the broadest possible audience, including those engaged with feminist theory, anthropology, social policy, sociology, psychology, and geography.

Table of Contents


Ann Phoenix


Róisin Ryan-Flood, Isabel Crowhurst, and Laurie James-Hawkins


1. The Gender Wars and Difficult Conversations about Trans: An interview with Meg-John Barker

Meg-John Barker and Róisín Ryan-Flood

2. Facing Uneasiness in Feminist Research: the case of female genital cutting

Kathy Davis

3. Feminism and Race in Academia: An interview with Sandya Hewamanne

Sandya Hewamanne and Róisín Ryan-Flood

4. But you’re not defending sugar, are you?

Karen Throsby


5. Difficult research effects/affects: Exploring idealised feminine embodiment in public advertising

Jessica Ringrose and Kaitlyn Regehr

6. The dramatic and the defensive in feminist digital social spaces

Akane Kanai

7. Interviewing with Intimacy: Negotiating Vulnerability and Trust in Difficult Conversations

Rikke Amundsen

8. Coexisting with uncomfortable reflexivity: feminist fieldwork abroad during the pandemic

Xintong Jia


9. Sexing in the Cities: Sex, Desire and Sexual Health of black township women who love women.

Phoebe Kisubi Mbasalaki

10. Researching Sex: Gender, Taboos, and Revealing the Intimate

Laurie James-Hawkins

11. Building a community of trust: participatory applied theatre workshop techniques for difficult conversations on consent

Natasha Richards

12. Women’s Experiences of Marital Rape in Turkey: Ethics, Voice and Difficult Conversations

Gulcimen Karakeci


13. Lost for words: Difficult conversations about ethics, reflexivity and research governance

Sophie Hales, Paul Galbally and Melissa Tyler

14. Gender Studies and the question of political relevance

Sabine Grenz

15. The Feminist Classroom in a Neoliberal University

Awino Okech

16. Focus groups and the ‘insider researcher’; difficult conversations and intersectional complexities

Clare Bowen

17. Queering the Academy

Róisín Ryan-Flood

View More



Róisín Ryan-Flood is Professor of Sociology and Director of the Centre for Intimate and Sexual Citizenship (CISC) at the University of Essex. Her research interests include gender, sexuality, kinship, digital intimacies, and feminist epistemology. She is the author of Lesbian Motherhood: Gender, Sexuality and Citizenship (Palgrave, 2009), and co-editor of Secrecy and Silence in the Research Process (Routledge, 2010) and Transnationalising Reproduction: Third Party Conception in a Globalised World (Routledge, 2018). She is also co-editor of the journal Sexualities: Studies in Culture and Society (Sage).

Isabel Crowhurst is Reader in Sociology at the University of Essex. Her work explores the construction of social norms around sexual practices and intimate lives. Her recent books include, The Tenacity of Couple Norm (with Sasha Roseneil, Tone Hellesund, Ana Cristina Santos and Mariya Stoilova, UCL Press), and Third Sector Organizations in Sex Work and Prostitution (with Susan Dewey and Chimaraoke Izugbara).

Laurie James-Hawkins is a Senior Lecturer in Sociology and Deputy Director of the Centre for Intimate and Sexual Citizenship (CISC) at the University of Essex. She is a sociologist of health and gender and her research interests include reproductive health, contraception, abortion, gender, and sexuality among emerging adults. She has published widely on these topics. In recent years Dr. James-Hawkins has been studying sexual consent among university student populations.