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International Journal of Qualitative Studies on Health and Well-being
For an Article Collection on
Intersectional Qualitative Research Methodologies
29 April 2024
Intersectional Qualitative Research Methodologies
In recent years in health and medicine, health equity researchers have increasingly emphasized the necessity of drawing upon intersectional perspectives to examine how related forms of oppression and power create the conditions for disparate and varied manifestations of health inequities in communities. Initially conceptualized within the Black feminist tradition, intersectionality can be understood as an umbrella term to describe various approaches to critical inquiry and praxis that explain and act upon the myriad ways interconnected systems of power, oppression, and disablement maintain inequality. Such analyses have illuminated critical gaps and distinctive manifestations of health inequities in studies of transgender health care, maternal morbidity and mortality, and interpersonal violence, for example. Moreover, intersectional approaches to qualitative methodologies and methods are uniquely suited to offer social science researchers novel approaches to studying how systems perpetuate oppressions related to, but not limited to, race, ethnicity, gender, disability, sexuality, place, language, age, and class. Qualitative approaches that engage with intersectional theory also show how many disciplinary and methodological conversations have been complicit in producing oppressive human hierarchies. In contrast, qualitative methodologies that unapologetically take up an intersectional approach foreground relationality, social justice, and democratized knowledge and, in so doing, offer a radically different orientation to what it means to study and act upon system inequities in layered and theoretically grounded ways.
In this article collection, we invite contributors to respond to Patricia Hill Collins' provocation: "How might intersectionality's social theories reflect its methodological practices and vice versa?" (Collins, 2019, p. 12). We are particularly interested in manuscripts that consider the following:
- How intersectional theory informs qualitative research designs in health and medicine.
- Uses of critical theoretical perspectives, such as anti- and de-colonialism, critical race theories, feminisms, queer theories
- Intersectionality and place, space, and geography
- Examination of how varied theories of social justice inform the goals and outcomes of intersectional inquiry and praxis
- Engagements with intersectionality for community-based participatory research
- Data generation, collection, and analysis practices
- Reflexive accounts of power dynamics in intersectional research
- Conceptions of research quality for intersectional research
- Approaches to acting upon findings from intersectional research
Collins, P. H. (2019). Intersectionality as critical social theory. Duke University Press.
About the Guest Advisors:
Jessica Nina Lester, PhD., is a professor of Qualitative Methodology in the School of Education at Indiana University, Bloomington. Having been trained in cultural studies and qualitative research methodology, she takes an interdisciplinary approach to her scholarship, including both the methodological and substantive foci of her research program. In her methodological work, Lester focuses on the study of language-based methods, digital tools in qualitative research, and disability in qualitative inquiry. Her substantive research has focused on examining interactional practices in clinical and educational contexts that involve children and youth. She is the co-author of 7 books and co-editor of 8 volumes. In addition, she has published over 90 peer-reviewed journal articles and co-edited 14 special journal issues. Lester has received numerous awards for her scholarship, among them the 2018 APA Distinguished Early Career Contributions in Qualitative Inquiry Award and the 2022 American Educational Studies Association Critics’ Choice Book Award. At Indiana University, Lester teaches qualitative methods courses and was recently recognized by the 2022 Gorman Distinguished Teaching Award.
Francesca A. Williamson, Ph.D. (she/her) is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Learning Health Sciences at the University of Michigan Medical School. She is an interdisciplinary scholar and qualitative methodologist whose work engages the fields of Black Studies, education, ethnomethodology, and health equity and justice research. Her work interrogates how educational, healthcare, and research practices reproduce and subvert (de)humanizing social orders. She is currently co-editing an edited volume entitled Classical Writings and Contemporary Responses in Qualitative Inquiry.
Anna C. Romero (she/her) is a Ph.D. student in the School of Education at Indiana University, in the Qualitative and Quantitative Research methodology program. With a focus on qualitative methodologies, she is an interdisciplinary scholar that engages with arts-based methodologies that work with and beyond traditional written discourses. In her methodological work, she concentrates on exploring epistemological constructions that go beyond human perspectives, investigating validity processes that extend beyond reason. Her research centers on the understanding of how engaging with epistemological foundations beyond reason and beyond human can promote environmental justice and interconnected ecological well-being.
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All manuscripts submitted to this Article Collection will undergo desk assessment and peer-review as part of our standard editorial process. Guest Advisors for this collection will not be involved in peer-reviewing manuscripts unless they are an existing member of the Editorial Board. Please review the journal Aims and Scope and author submission instructions prior to submitting a manuscript.