016: TCRM Session 6 Symposium - Reflexive Family Voices: Narrating the Personal, Professional, and Political

Katherine R. Allen; Sarah Allen
4:00 PM
5:15 PM
Conrad A
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Conference Attendance Hours: 1

Although family scholars study intimate details of human interaction, connection, and behavior, we rarely identify how we, as family members, are embedded in our own research and theorizing. Intersectional feminists, however, advocate for transparency in revealing how individual lives are connected to broader social systems of power and stratification (Allen, 2022). In this symposium, the authors go beyond simply identifying demographic, positional, and social locations by critically analyzing the invisible personal motivations and experiences that guide our professional work. We use feminist autoethnography to illuminate the personal, professional, and political implications of our work that highlight our social justice intentions. We bring into the open the underside of family scholarship by explicitly featuring the personal and family histories, secrets, and silences that are rarely examined components of the scholarly process. The narrators of these four papers are all intersectional feminist family scholars and have accepted the organizers invitation to expand upon how family science can become increasingly conscious of our motivations and commitments in doing the work we do. The authors accomplish this invitation by going deeper into their scholarly process. They question, challenge, and wonder about how their private experiences intersect with their academic and professional interests. By doing so, these four papers offer a forum for making known what is often hidden. Bringing sources of knowledge that are often marginalized and unheard out into the open allows us to challenge some of our most cherished positions and assumptions, including who is in and out of our families, whose interests are served by what is said and unsaid, and how we can protect and champion the most vulnerable and marginalized among us.

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