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Women's conceptions of power Wilson, Carol Lynne 1991

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WOMEN'S CONCEPTIONS OP POWER by CAROL LYNNE WILSON B.A., U n i v e r s i t y o f Western O n t a r i o , 1966 Ed.Dip., U n i v e r s i t y o f A l b e r t a , 1972  . THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS  in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES Department o f C o u n s e l l i n g  Psychology  We accept t h i s T h e s i s as conforming to the required  standard  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA April,  1991  ® C a r o l Lynne Wilson, 1991  In  presenting  degree  this  at the  thesis  in  partial  fulfilment  of  University of  British  Columbia,  I agree that the Library shall make it  freely available for reference and study. copying  of  department  this or  thesis by  for scholarly  his  publication of this thesis  or  her  rnnnsRlling  DE-6 (2/88)  A p r i l 29, 1991  for  purposes  may  representatives.  It  be is  granted  an  Psychology  advanced  for extensive  by the head  understood  that  for financial gain shall not be allowed without  The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada  Date  requirements  I further agree that permission  permission.  Department of  the  of  my  copying  or  my written  ABSTRACT  T h i s t h e s i s d e s c r i b e s women's c o n c e p t i o n s o f power i n t h e c o n t e x t o f an all-woman work group. of  Research  on t h e psychology  power, which began i n t h e 1950's, has been dominated by  particular focii,  p e r s p e c t i v e s and techniques which may have  r e s u l t e d i n somewhat narrow d e f i n i t i o n s o f power which t a p o n l y f a c t o r s t r a d i t i o n a l l y seen as "masculine." focii,  I n r e f r a m i n g these  p e r s p e c t i v e s and techniques, t h i s r e s e a r c h focuses on  women's understandings; was conducted  from a n a t u r a l i s t i c  p e r s p e c t i v e , u s i n g q u a l i t a t i v e t e c h n i q u e s ; and approached t h e i n v e s t i g a t i o n o f power from a p o s i t i o n o f "not knowing" r a t h e r than r e l y i n g on a p r i o r i  theory.  The n a t u r a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e used i n t h i s study i s phenomenography, a r e l a t i v e l y new r e s e a r c h approach developed i n Sweden by a group o f e d u c a t i o n a l r e s e a r c h e r s a t t h e U n i v e r s i t y of Goteborg.  Phenomenography d e s c r i b e s i n d i v i d u a l s ' c o n c e p t i o n s i n  the form o f c a t e g o r i e s o f d e s c r i p t i o n which r e p r e s e n t people's ways o f understanding power.  o r c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g phenomena—in t h i s case,  The f i n d i n g s o f t h i s s t u d y — t h e  conceptions o f p o w e r —  came out o f in-depth open-ended i n t e r v i e w s w i t h e i g h t women who comprised  t h e membership o f t h e 1988-89 " g e n d e r - f a i r "  c o u n s e l l o r s ' t r a i n i n g team a t UBC. conducted  i n t h e hermeneutic  These i n t e r v i e w s were  t r a d i t i o n of mutually-constructed  meaning, audio taped, t r a n s c r i b e d , and analyzed t o y i e l d s i x q u a l i t a t i v e l y d i f f e r e n t conceptions o f power which appear c o n s i s t e n t w i t h f e m i n i s t theory on women's  developmental  iii perspectives categories  and v i e w s o f power.  o f meaning,  which understandings self  to  "being",  a public context. 1. la. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.  to  on t h e o t h e r ; interacting;  The s i x  for  of these  i n t h e form o f  i n t o an outcome s p a c e  (b) and  conceptions  personal integrity entitlement expressing personal self-determination agency/competence respected standing influence  The i m p l i c a t i o n s suggestions  are organized  o f power move f r o m :  an o u t e r f o c u s to acting,  The c o n c e p t i o n s ,  (a)  an i n n e r f o c u s  a view of (c)  a private  o f power  are:  for counselling  f u r t h e r research are  discussed.  on  the process  integrity/congruence  findings  in  and  context  as to  iv TABLE OF CONTENTS  Abstract  i i  T a b l e o f Contents L i s t of Tables  iv v i i  L i s t o f Appendices Acknowledgements I. II.  III.  INTRODUCTION  viii ix 1  FRAMING THE RESEARCH PROBLEM  5  A.  The Research Focus  5  B.  The Research P e r s p e c t i v e  9  C.  The Research Technique  14  D.  The Research Question  25  METHODOLOGY  27  A.  Phenomenography  27  B.  Data C o l l e c t i o n  36  1.  Context: P a r t i c i p a n t s and S e t t i n g  36  Participants  36  Setting  45  Members* c o n c e p t i o n s o f group c o h e s i v e n e s s . . .  49  Member's c o n c e p t i o n s o f t h e e f f e c t s o f intra-group differences  50  Members' c o n c e p t i o n s o f t h e Group as a  2.  s a f e environment  53  Data C o l l e c t i o n Technique  54  The hermeneutic encounter  55  The c o n v e r s a t i o n s  57  V  C. IV.  Data A n a l y s i s  67  RESULTS A.  73  Women's Conceptions  o f Power  73  The Outcome space: C a t e g o r i e s o f Meaning  75  Conception  1: Power i s p e r s o n a l i n t e g r i t y  . . .  Conception  l a : Power i s a sense o f e n t i t l e m e n t  Conception  2: Power i s e x p r e s s i n g  . 79  personal  integrity/congruence  B.  V.  75  82  Conception  3: Power i s s e l f - d e t e r m i n a t i o n  . . .  84  Conception  4: Powers i s agency/competence  . . .  86  Conception  5: Power i s r e s p e c t e d s t a n d i n g  . . .  88  Conception  6: Power i s i n f l u e n c i n g o t h e r s  . . .  90  D i s c u s s i o n : The Outcome Space  91  L i n k s Between Conceptions  92  Power Systems  92  IMPLICATIONS OF FINDINGS  97  A.  Research/Theory: The Psychology  o f Power  97  The Nature o f Power  B.  97  Women's A t t i t u d e s Toward Power  109  Discussion  114  Women's Understandings o f t h e Nature o f Power The  S i x Conceptions  . .  o f Views o f Power  Conception  1: Power i s p e r s o n a l i n t e g r i t y  Conception  2: Power i s e x p r e s s i n g  114 117  . .  personal i n t e g r i t y  117  118  Conception  3: Power i s s e l f - d e t e r m i n a t i o n  . .  119  Conception  4: Power i s agency/competence . . .  120  vi Conception 5: Power i s r e s p e c t e d s t a n d i n g  . .  121  Conception 6: Power i s i n f l u e n c i n g o t h e r s  . .  122  Women's O r i e n t a t i o n and A t t i t u d e s t o Power . . . .  123  C.  I m p l i c a t i o n s f o r Future Research  126  D.  Implications f o r Counselling  127  REFERENCES  137  APPENDICES  145  vii LIST OF TABLES  T a b l e 1: Outcome space f o r Conceptions o f Power  93  T a b l e 2: "Source" o f Power as L i n k s Between Conceptions . . .  94  viii LIST OF APPENDICES  Appendix A: Respondent Consent Form  145  Appendix B: Q u e s t i o n n a i r e  146  Appendix C: P o s t - I n t e r v i e w Q u e s t i o n n a i r e  147  Appendix D: T r a n s c r i p t T y p e s c r i p t N o t a t i o n  148  Appendix E: Synonyms and Antonyms f o r Power  149  Appendix F: R e s u l t s o f Independent Judge R e l i a b i l i t y T e s t .  150  ix ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS  I would l i k e ,  f i r s t , t o thank t h e women who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n  t h i s s t u d y — w h o s e open and honest s h a r i n g o f e x p e r i e n c e s and thoughts a r e t h e bedrock o f t h i s r e s e a r c h . Secondly, I wish t o acknowledge my committee r e a l a p p r e c i a t i o n , f o r t h e i r r o l e i n my work.  members, w i t h  S p e c i a l thanks t o  my s u p e r v i s o r , L a r r y Cochran, f o r your support and encouragement t o work out o f my i n n e r p a s s i o n and p e r s o n a l i n t e r e s t s and t o f i n d a methodology  t h a t f i t w i t h my c o n v i c t i o n s .  And t o Dan  P r a t t , f o r your s h a r i n g o f knowledge and i n t e r e s t — b u t ,  beyond  t h a t , f o r your i n n a t e understanding and a c t i n g out o f power i n a c o n t e x t o f c a r e and connectedness. Sometimes, I f e l t t h a t I would never reach t h i s stage o f completing my r e s e a r c h and l o o k back t o acknowledge and thank those who, i n some important way, became a p a r t o f t h i s endeavour. and s t i l l  A t those moments, f e e l i n g exhausted and d i s c o u r a g e d , s e e i n g a long u p h i l l climb ahead, t h e thought o f t h e  c a r i n g , l o v e and support which I r e c e i v e d from important people i n my l i f e was an e n e r g i z e r which kept me moving completion o f t h i s t a s k .  towards  S p e c i a l thanks t o G i l l i a n Stronach f o r  your p a t i e n t i n t e r - j u d g e work which was important i n e s t a b l i s h i n g the r e l i a b i l i t y o f t h i s r e s e a r c h , and f o r your c a r i n g support and friendship.  And t o E l i z a b e t h C a r r i e r e , my f r i e n d ,  f o r your work  as an independent judge, and f o r t h e hours o f peer d e b r i e f i n g work and t h e i n s p i r a t i o n o f your i n s i g h t s , your c u r i o s i t y , enthusiasm and i n t e r e s t i n my work throughout.  Love and  your  X  g r a t i t u d e t o Dana, my encouragement and  l i f e - p a r t n e r , f o r your c o n s i s t e n t ,  support throughout t h i s o r d e a l .  degrees c o u l d be shared, s u r e l y p a r t of t h i s one And  t o my  children:  Kevin, Campbell and  moves me  i n that d i r e c t i o n .  connection  between theses and  mothers and  empowers me.  spiritually,  Val.  yours.  I've  recognizes  the  f e c e s and whose l o v i n g power  Thanks t o my  s i s t e r , Laurie,  my  very s p e c i a l f r i e n d s who  have  i n ways too numerous t o m e n t i o n — e m o t i o n a l l y ,  and p r a c t i c a l l y — t o the empowering context  which I have worked: and  would be  and whose l o v e  To Joyce Frazee, who  nephews, Dharma and John, and my also contributed  I f academic  K i r a f o r whom  always wished t o be the "best t h a t I can be,"  loving  within  E l l e n , G e r r i e , M a r i l y n , Ginny> G a i l ,  Dixie  1 I.  The  INTRODUCTION  focus o f t h i s study i s on answering t h e q u e s t i o n o f how  women understand  and experience power.  T h i s chapter  introduces  the r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n and t h e p a r t i c u l a r approaches u t i l i z e d i n t h i s study. The s p e c i f i c q u e s t i o n which i s addressed i s : What a r e t h e conceptions o f power h e l d by women p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n an all-woman work group? T h i s q u e s t i o n emerges out o f a c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f a growing body o f l i t e r a t u r e which suggests  t h a t women approach power from  a unique developmental p e r s p e c t i v e which i n c l u d e s an emphasis on v a l u i n g i n t e r p e r s o n a l connectedness i n a context o f empathy and caring  (Baker M i l l e r ,  1986: G i l l i g a n ,  F e m i n i s t t h e o r i s t s a r e suggesting,  1982; L i p s ,  1991).  i n a s m a l l b u t growing body o f  l i t e r a t u r e , t h a t i n d i c h o t o m i z i n g our d e f i n i t i o n s o f s o c i a l phenomena t o i n c l u d e only t r a d i t i o n a l l y "masculine"  perspectives,  we do a l l o f us—women and men, a l i k e — a grave d i s f a v o u r . In r e t h i n k i n g our s o c i a l d e f i n i t i o n s , a t a time when women a r e moving more and more i n t o c l a i m i n g economic and p o l i t i c a l power, and mankind i s moving c l o s e r and c l o s e r t o d e s t r o y i n g t h e p l a n e t , and perhaps t h e u n i v e r s e , i t seems important our understandings, examination  t o b e g i n t o balance  which have t r a d i t i o n a l l y come out o f t h e  o f men's experience  and development, w i t h a  d e l i n e a t i o n o f women's experience  and understanding.  With t h i s  balance we h o p e f u l l y move toward more complete and human possibilities,  f o r women and f o r men.  2  A review o f t h e psychology o f power l i t e r a t u r e r e v e a l s t h a t , u n t i l r e c e n t l y , r e s e a r c h approaches  were dominated  by t r a d i t i o n a l  f o c i i , p e r s p e c t i v e s and t e c h n i q u e s . In r e f r a m i n g these approaches,  t h i s study r e c o n s i d e r s t h e p s y c h o l o g i c a l meaning o f  power. S i n c e t h e 1950's, when e m p i r i c a l s t u d i e s on power were i n i t i a t e d , t h e focus has been on power as i n f l u e n c e and c o n t r o l over o t h e r s ( M c C l e l l a n d , 1975; Winter, 1973).  This concentration  on power as c o n t r o l over o t h e r s proceeds from a p r i o r i theory, and i n approaching power from, as much as p o s s i b l e , a p o s i t i o n o f "not knowing" and a l l o w i n g c o n c e p t i o n s o f power t o emerge from the data, t h i s r e s e a r c h moves from a focus on t r a d i t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n s o f power t o an openness t o o t h e r , l a r g e l y ignored a s p e c t s o f t h i s phenomenon.  The second dominant r e s e a r c h focus  which t h i s study reframes i s an emphasis on t h e c h o i c e o f men as r e s e a r c h s u b j e c t s o r respondents. In s w i t c h i n g t h e balance o f a t t e n t i o n from men's p e r s p e c t i v e s , t o i n c l u d e women's, t h i s r e s e a r c h , r a t h e r than assuming a homogenous "women's" experience, e x p l o r e s t h e v a r i a t i o n o f understanding and e x p e r i e n c e expressed by t h e respondents.  The t h i r d reframed focus here i s t r a d i t i o n a l  psychology's i n t e r e s t i n b e h a v i o u r a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f t h e individual.  Instead, t h e focus, i n t h i s study, becomes t h e  i n d i v i d u a l ' s p e r s p e c t i v e on, o r experience o f , t h e world.  The  r a t i o n a l e f o r t h i s l i e s i n t h e f a c t t h a t we a c t i n accordance w i t h our b e l i e f s and c o n c e p t i o n s about the world.  Thus, i n  b e t t e r u n d e r s t a n d i n g women's c o n c e p t i o n s o f power, we move i n t o a s t r o n g e r p o s i t i o n from which t o understand the ways which women ,  3  approach and d e a l w i t h power i n t h e i r  lives.  In refraining t h e r e s e a r c h p e r s p e c t i v e , t h i s study moves away from a t r a d i t i o n a l r a t i o n a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e t o a n a t u r a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e which emphasizes t h e s o c i a l c o n s t r u c t i o n o f r e a l i t y by t h e i n d i v i d u a l . I n r e c o g n i z i n g t h e importance o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l , and t h e importance o f t h e context w i t h i n which i n d i v i d u a l s l i v e t h e i r r e a l i t i e s , the n a t u r a l i s t i c perspective seems a b e t t e r " f i t "  t o a f i e l d l i k e c o u n s e l l i n g psychology  than  does t h e r a t i o n a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e , which grew out o f a c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f t h e p h y s i c a l and b i o l o g i c a l s c i e n c e s . F i n a l l y , a q u a l i t a t i v e r e s e a r c h technique was adopted here, r a t h e r than a q u a n t i t a t i v e technique.  Traditional quantitative  s t u d i e s o f power have focused on i n d i v i d u a l s * which was e x p e r i m e n t a l l y aroused settings.  need f o r power  i n controlled laboratory  As Ng (1980), p o i n t e d out, t h i s " a r t i f i c i a l "  approach  t o t h e complex phenomenon o f power must, n e c e s s a r i l y , f a i l t o arouse t h e f u l l  range o f experience which i n d i v i d u a l s may  a s s o c i a t e w i t h power.  In moving t o q u a l i t a t i v e techniques,  this  study pays c l o s e a t t e n t i o n t o context, u t i l i z e s t h e r e s e a r c h e r as data c o l l e c t o r r a t h e r than r e l y i n g on " o b j e c t i v e " i n s t r u m e n t a t i o n , and d e s c r i b e s r e s e a r c h r e s u l t s r a t h e r than s t a t i s t i c a l l y .  These techniques  descriptively,  a r e c o n s i s t e n t with  the n a t u r a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e which t h i s study adopts and make t h e best " f i t "  t o i t s i n t e r e s t i n women's  conceptions.  Chapter I I frames t h e r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n by expanding t h i s d i s c u s s i o n o f r e s e a r c h focus, p e r s p e c t i v e and technique. emphasis here r e s t s on the assumption t h a t c h o i c e s  The  concerning  4 focus, p e r s p e c t i v e and technique a f f e c t every aspect o f t h e r e s e a r c h , i n c l u d i n g t h e q u e s t i o n s i t i s p o s s i b l e t o ask. Chapter  I I I d i s c u s s e s t h e u n d e r l y i n g concepts and  methodology which informed t h e c o n s t r u c t i o n and implementation o f the study. I t d e s c r i b e s , i n d e t a i l , t h e e m p i r i c a l r e s e a r c h approach o f phenomenography which was developed  t o reveal the  q u a l i t a t i v e l y d i f f e r e n t ways i n which people experience and c o n c e p t u a l i z e v a r i o u s phenomena press).  I t d i s c u s s e s data c o l l e c t i o n i n t h e frame o f t h e  "hermeneutic values"  (Beaty, D a l l ' A l b a & Marton, i n  encounter,"  s i t u a t e d w i t h i n a commitment t o "humane  ( M i s h l e r , 1985) and, i n p a r t i c u l a r , t o my p e r s o n a l v a l u e  of working w i t h women i n a way t h a t v a l i d a t e s t h e i r p e r s o n a l experience.  F i n a l l y , t h i s chapter d i s c u s s e s t h e a n a l y s i s o f t h e  research data. Chapter  IV p r e s e n t s t h e r e s e a r c h f i n d i n g s as s i x  q u a l i t a t i v e l y d i f f e r e n t conceptions o f power.  I t d i s c u s s e s these  f i n d i n g s as outcome s p a c e — a n o r d e r i n g o f t h e c o n c e p t i o n s which emphasizes t h e i r  interconnectedness.  Chapter V d i s c u s s e s t h e i m p l i c a t i o n s o f t h e r e s e a r c h findings.  I t begins w i t h a b r i e f review o f t h e r e l e v a n t  l i t e r a t u r e on t h e psychology and power. and  o f power and t h e psychology  o f women  The r e s e a r c h r e s u l t s a r e r e l a t e d t o t h e l i t e r a t u r e  i m p l i c a t i o n s a r e drawn f o r c o u n s e l l i n g and f o r f u r t h e r  investigations.  5 II.  The  FRAMING THE RESEARCH PROBLEM  purpose o f t h i s chapter  i s t o consider the p a r t i c u l a r  r e s e a r c h focus, p e r s p e c t i v e and technique  o f t h i s study and t o  c o n t r a s t t h e approach taken here w i t h t h e t r a d i t i o n a l o r dominant approach.  The importance o f g i v i n g s p e c i a l c o n s i d e r a t i o n t o t h e  focus, p e r s p e c t i v e and techniques t h a t c h o i c e s around these  of research l i e s  i n t h e impact  i s s u e s have, not o n l y on t h e r e s e a r c h  d e s i g n and implementation, but a l s o on t h e type o f q u e s t i o n s asked and, o f course,  on t h e answers t o these q u e s t i o n s — a n d  on t h e way these a r e u l t i m a t e l y i n t e r p r e t e d and used Strauss,  1967; W a l l s t o n  even  (Glaser &  & Grady, 1985).  A.  The Research Focus  A review o f t h e power l i t e r a t u r e i n psychology r e v e a l s c e r t a i n f o c i i which have dominated r e s e a r c h i n t o power. These f o c i i n o t o n l y c e n t r e t h e power r e s e a r c h and t h e o r i z i n g i n p a r t i c u l a r d i r e c t i o n s but,  i n so doing,  reveal c e r t a i n biases,  i n c l u d i n g a n d r o c e n t r i c assumptions around power i s s u e s .  This  s e c t i o n o f my study examines each o f these  f o c i i and d i s c u s s e s ,  i n each case, t h e present  focus.  One  study's  way o f examining f o c i i  consider the aspect(s)  reframed  i n t r a d i t i o n a l research i s to  o f power focused on.  Since p s y c h o l o g i s t s  began doing e m p i r i c a l s t u d i e s on power, i n t h e 1950's, t h e most popular  r e s e a r c h t o p i c s have focused on power as i n f l u e n c e and  c o n t r o l over o t h e r s .  Research on t h i s aspect o f power  6 r e p r e s e n t s , by f a r , the g r e a t e s t p o r t i o n of the p s y c h o l o g i c a l l i t e r a t u r e i n t h i s area. Much of t h i s r e s e a r c h has been done on power m o t i v a t i o n or n Power (need  f o r p o w e r ) — w i t h power, i n  these s t u d i e s , d e f i n e d as "the c a p a c i t y of producing or unconsciously)  intended e f f e c t s on people's  emotion" (Winter,  1973,  1975,  p. 7 ) .  p. 5 ) ; or, "having  (consciously  behaviour  impact"  Thus i n measuring the degree of an  (McClelland,  individual's  need f o r power i n these i n v e s t i g a t i o n s , power m o t i v a t i o n s c o r e d i f someone was  or  was  concerned about or took some k i n d o f a c t i o n  about " e s t a b l i s h i n g , m a i n t a i n i n g , or r e s t o r i n g . . . p o w e r - t h a t i s , h i s impact, c o n t r o l o r i n f l u e n c e over another  person,  persons o r the world a t l a r g e " (Winter,  p. 250).  1973,  group of One  e f f e c t o f t h i s dominant r e s e a r c h focus on "power over" i s t h a t other, perhaps e q u a l l y important, l a r g e l y ignored.  McClelland  aspects of power have been  (1975) speaks t o t h i s when he  t h a t t h i s r e s e a r c h cannot be presumed t o r e p r e s e n t a l l the dimensions of the power experience.  notes key  F e m i n i s t c r i t i q u e s of t h i s  dominant focus i n p s y c h o l o g i c a l power r e s e a r c h p o i n t out t h a t p r i o r i t h e o r y from which t h i s r e s e a r c h proceeds i s focused dimensions which are p a r t i c u l a r l y i n t e r e s t i n g t o men f o r the most p a r t , ignore women's i n t e r e s t s or needs.  a  on  and which, Thus i t i s  p o s s i b l e t h a t the d e f i n i t i o n s of power used i n most p s y c h o l o g i c a l i n v e s t i g a t i o n s are too narrow and tap o n l y f a c t o r s t r a d i t i o n a l l y c o n s i d e r e d o f male o r i e n t a t i o n . t h a t men  Some t h e o r i s t s have  suggested  and women not only conceive of power d i f f e r e n t l y ,  a l s o express McClelland,  t h e i r need f o r power d i f f e r e n t l y 1975;  Miller,  1986;).  Gullahorn  (Gilligan,  but 1982;  (1979) a l l u d e s t o  7 t h i s dominant p s y c h o l o g i c a l r e s e a r c h focus on power as i n f l u e n c e / c o n t r o l , when she s t a t e s , "But t h e r e a r e o t h e r aspects o f power...that need f u r t h e r a t t e n t i o n i n t h e psychology o f women" (p. 138).  I n f o r e g o i n g p r e c o n c e i v e d c o n c e p t i o n s o f power,  t h i s study moves from a focus on p a r t i c u l a r a s p e c t s o f power t o an openness t o those "other a s p e c t s . " An important aspect o f r e s e a r c h d e s i g n i s i n v o l v e d i n t h e c h o i c e o f s u b j e c t s o r respondents.  C e r t a i n l y samples f o r power  r e s e a r c h have tended t o be composed mainly o f men; t h i s i s t h e second dominant r e s e a r c h focus which t h i s study Macauley research,  (1985),  reframes.  i n d i s c u s s i n g male c e n t r i s m i n a g g r e s s i o n  p o i n t s out t h a t t h e number o f male s u b j e c t s i n a l l  areas o f p s y c h o l o g i c a l r e s e a r c h f a r outranked  t h e number o f  female s u b j e c t s , a t l e a s t up u n t i l t h e mid-197 0s.  I n power  r e s e a r c h s e v e r a l consequences emerge from t h i s p r e o c c u p a t i o n with men  as r e s e a r c h s u b j e c t s .  F i r s t , t h i s c o n c e n t r a t i o n on men as  the s u b j e c t s o f study and the focus o f our a t t e n t i o n l i m i t s our u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f women and power.  As J e s s e Bernard  (1981) p o i n t s  out, our study o f s o c i e t y becomes a male study o f male s o c i e t y . A second,  r e l a t e d consequence o f t h i s focus i s t h a t c o n c l u s i o n s  drawn from data o r i g i n a t i n g from t h e study o f men "have tended t o r e g a r d male b e h a v i o r as t h e 'norm' and female b e h a v i o r as some k i n d o f d e v i a t i o n from t h e norm" ( M c C l e l l a n d , 1975, p. 81). Thus, M c C l e l l a n d contends men  t h a t women a r e seen as t h e o p p o s i t e o f  and o f t e n d e s c r i b e d i n ways t h a t a r e n e g a t i v e o r demeaning.  Another,  l e s s f r e q u e n t l y c o n s i d e r e d r e s u l t o f t h i s focus on men  and power i s t h a t d i f f e r e n c e s and s i m i l i t i e s between men's  8  experience  o f power and women's experience  o f power (or power-  r e l a t e d behaviour) have been emphasized, whereas d i f f e r e n c e s and s i m i l a r i t i e s w i t h i n each group have been deemphasized.  Thus, i n  heeding  t h e frequent c a l l s i n power l i t e r a t u r e t o r e d r e s s t h e  balance  o f a t t e n t i o n from male p e r s p e c t i v e s t o i n c l u d e women's  experience  (Baker M i l l e r ,  1986; E i c h l e r , 1988; G i l l i g a n , 1982;  G u l l a h o r n , 1979; L i p s , 1981; M c C l e l l a n d , 1975), t h i s study does not simply r e a d j u s t t h e focus t o women but seeks t o e x p l o r e t h e v a r i a t i o n o f e x p e r i e n c e / c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n o f power w i t h i n a group of women, r a t h e r than t o assume t h a t t h e r e i s a homogeneous "women's e x p e r i e n c e "  o f t h i s phenomenon.  The t h i r d focus which t h i s r e s e a r c h seeks t o reframe i s t r a d i t i o n a l power psychology's  preoccupation with the actor.  I n v e s t i g a t i o n s o f power have focused a t t e n t i o n on t h e i n d i v i d u a l i n an attempt t o , f o r example, d i s c o v e r b e h a v i o u r a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s which c o r r e l a t e with high/low n Power, o r i n an attempt t o measure t h e i n t e n s i t y o f power m o t i v a t i o n .  An  a l t e r n a t i v e focus i s t h e one t h i s study embraces—namely, a focus on t h e i n d i v i d u a l ' s c o n c e p t i o n o r experience  o f t h e world.  This  i s c o n s i s t e n t with phenomenography's second-order r e s e a r c h p e r s p e c t i v e which i s d i s c u s s e d , i n d e t a i l , In summary, t h i s study:  i n Chapter I I I .  (a) r e f o c u s e s t h e t r a d i t i o n a l  c o n c e n t r a t i o n on power as c o n t r o l o r i n f l u e n c e by a l l o w i n g conceptions  o f power t o emerge from t h e data, r a t h e r than t a k i n g  e s t a b l i s h e d d e f i n i t i o n s as t h e p o i n t o f d e p a r t u r e ;  (b) r e f o c u s e s  the dominant r e s e a r c h ' s c o n c e n t r a t i o n on men, and t h e i r and e x p e r i e n c e s ,  behaviour  t o a c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f women's experience; and  9  (c) r e f o c u s e s psychology's t r a d i t i o n a l i n t e r e s t i n the  individual  a c t o r s and t h e i r behaviour o r p e r s o n a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s t o an i n t e r e s t i n the a c t o r s ' ideas about the world, o r t h e i r experiences  of i t .  "The  r a t i o n a l e f o r t h i s can be found i n the  i d e a t h a t a c t o r s • conceptions understanding In adopting  of t h e i r world  are a b a s i s f o r the  of them and t h e i r a c t s " (Larsson,  1983,  p.  these a l t e r n a t i v e f o c i i i n i t s examination of the  v a r i a t i o n o f conceptions  of power h e l d by women w i t h i n a  p a r t i c u l a r all-women group, t h i s study seeks t o d i f f e r e n c e s and  explore  s i m i l a r i t i e s w i t h i n t h a t group.  B.  The Research P e r s p e c t i v e  A d i s c u s s i o n of r e s e a r c h p e r s p e c t i v e d e a l s with e p i s t e m o l o g i c a l foundations  of the r e s e a r c h approach  d e s c r i b e s paradigms f o r i n q u i r y , not methods. some d i f f e r e n c e i n the way  the and  Although t h e r e i s  t h a t r e s e a r c h e r s frame p e r s p e c t i v e ,  t h e r e appears t o be agreement t h a t i t i s p o s s i b l e t o  identify  u n d e r l y i n g b e l i e f systems or assumptions which support distinct  356).  perspectives.  Guba (1981) d i s c u s s e s two  relatively  c a t e g o r i e s of  r e s e a r c h p e r s p e c t i v e ; he c a l l s these n a t u r a l i s t i c i n q u i r y and r a t i o n a l i s t i c inquiry. The  t r a d i t i o n a l or dominant p e r s p e c t i v e ,  inquiry, i s s t i l l  rationalistic  a p p l i e d t o most s o c i a l s c i e n c e  including psychological research.  research,  I t grew out of the  biological  and p h y s i c a l s c i e n c e s i n which the o b s e r v a t i o n of phenomena p l a y s an important  part.  One  of the key assumptions u n d e r l y i n g  this  10 p e r s p e c t i v e i s t h a t " t r u t h statements" o r " f a c t s " can be seen and s t u d i e d ; not o n l y are these independent o f each other, but they are a l s o seen as e x i s t i n g independently from the c o n t e x t i n which they o c c u r ( F i r e s t o n e , 1987; Guba, 1981).  The o b j e c t o f  r a t i o n a l i s t i c r e s e a r c h thus becomes the s e a r c h f o r enduring, c o n t e x t - f r e e t r u t h statements which can be g e n e r a l i z e d from the sample t e s t e d t o a wider p o p u l a t i o n which t h a t s t a t i s t i c a l l y represents.  sample  T h i s approach focuses on d e v e l o p i n g  nomothetic knowledge (knowledge r e l a t e d t o o r d e a l i n g w i t h the a b s t r a c t , the u n i v e r s a l , o r the g e n e r a l ) and, i n so doing, c o n c e n t r a t e s on the s i m i l a r i t i e s between o b j e c t s of i n q u i r y . These assumptions around the nature o f r e a l i t y and the nature of t r u t h statements, combined w i t h the i d e a o f a d i s i n t e r e s t e d o r o b j e c t i v e s c i e n c e , l e n d themselves t o the n o t i o n t h a t the r e s e a r c h e r can be independent o r d e t a c h e d — n e i t h e r i n f l u e n c e d by nor i n f l u e n c i n g the o b j e c t o f i n q u i r y . These then are the major concepts around which the r a t i o n a l i s t i c paradigm o f r e s e a r c h i s o r g a n i z e d .  T h i s mode of  i n q u i r y has dominated p s y c h o l o g i c a l r e s e a r c h from the n i n e t e e n t h century, when psychology e s t a b l i s h e d i t s p o s i t i o n as a s e p a r a t e d i s c i p l i n e , u n t i l today.  S i n c e about the 1960's, however, t h e r e  has been a q u e s t i o n n i n g o f the t e n e t s o f the r a t i o n a l i s t i c approach t o r e s e a r c h  ( G i o r g i , 1975; Guba, 1981; L i n c o l n & Guba,  1985). The p e r s p e c t i v e which t h i s study adopts i s the n a t u r a l i s t i c view o f r e s e a r c h .  T h i s i s not because the n a t u r a l i s t i c  p e r s p e c t i v e i s n e c e s s a r i l y a more " c o r r e c t " paradigm o f r e s e a r c h  11 than the r a t i o n a l i s t i c .  Guba (1981) and Marton (1988) both p o i n t  out t h a t t h e r e i s no reason t o choose one o f these p e r s p e c t i v e s over the o t h e r i n each and every r e s e a r c h endeavor; makes sense t o examine the assumptions  rather, i t  u n d e r l y i n g each and  these i n the c o n t e x t of the p a r t i c u l a r r e s e a r c h i n q u i r y .  review "Just  as i t i s p r o p e r t o s e l e c t t h a t a n a l y t i c s t a t i s t i c whose assumptions  are b e s t met by a s e t o f data, so i t i s proper t o  s e l e c t t h a t paradigm  whose assumptions  phenomenon b e i n g i n v e s t i g a t e d "  are b e s t met by the  (Guba, 1981,  p. 76).  f o l l o w s , I w i l l b r i e f l y examine the assumptions  In what  u n d e r l y i n g the  n a t u r a l i s t i c mode and d i s c u s s these i n the c o n t e x t o f t h e i r  "fit"  w i t h t h i s r e s e a r c h i n v e s t i g a t i o n of women's c o n c e p t i o n s of power. As a l r e a d y noted, the r a t i o n a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e assumes a s i n g l e r e a l i t y upon which r e s e a r c h e f f o r t s can f o c u s . n a t u r a l i s t i c paradigm, interrelated realities.  The  on the o t h e r hand, assumes m u l t i p l e C l o s e l y connected t o t h i s , r a t h e r than  assuming the g e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y of c o n t e x t - f r e e t r u t h  statements,  the n a t u r a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e embraces the develpment of idiographic  (as opposed t o nomothetic)  knowledge which focuses on  " d i f f e r e n c e s . . . a s f r e q u e n t l y and w i t h as much i n t e r e s t as on similarities"  (Guba, 1981,  p.77).  Guba a l s o notes t h a t although  most r e s e a r c h develops from what he c a l l s the  "nomothetic  p o s t u r e " a p p l i c a t i o n s are o f t e n i n a p p r o p r i a t e l y made i n idiographic settings.  He sees an i n c o n g r u i t y i n a p p l y i n g  r a t i o n a l i s t i c i n q u i r y t o f i e l d s l i k e c o u n s e l l i n g psychology, f o r example, which, cases.  o f course, d e a l s w i t h a p p l i c a t i o n i n i n d i v i d u a l  A p p l i c a t i o n here would be b e t t e r done from a n a t u r a l i s t i c  12 p e r s p e c t i v e which acknowledges the i n d i v i d u a l i s t i c nature of t r u t h and the importance  of r e c o g n i z i n g the c o n t e x t s w i t h i n which  i n d i v i d u a l s experience t h e i r  realities.  The s h i f t which has r e c e n t l y k i n d l e d i n t e r e s t i n the n a t u r a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e seems p a r t i c u l a r l y r e l e v a n t i n the study of s o c i a l phenomena, such as power.  Such phenomena, u n l i k e  p h y s i c a l o b j e c t s i n the world, cannot be "touched" or " p o i n t e d t o " per se, but e x i s t mainly i n the minds of i n d i v i d u a l s ,  and  thus t h e r e c o u l d , t h e o r e t i c a l l y , e x i s t as many " r e a l i t i e s " individuals.  In acknowledging  the i d e a t h a t people's  i s g r e a t l y i n f l u e n c e d by the way  they experience and  as  behaviour interpret  t h e i r r e a l i t i e s , and i n moving away from the r a t i o n a l i s t i c i d e a of one c o n f i r m a b l e r e a l i t y , the r e s e a r c h e r ' s aim becomes the d i s c o v e r y of the ways t h a t i n d i v i d u a l s c r e a t e and m a i n t a i n t h e i r w o r l d s / r e a l i t i e s , along w i t h some understanding of t h e s e . F u r t h e r , r e s e a r c h e r s who  might be capable of remaining n e u t r a l i n  the f a c e of p h y s i c a l or chemical phenomena—although as Guba, (1981) p o i n t s out, even t h a t i s d e b a t a b l e — c a n n o t  do t h a t when  the i n v e s t i g a t i o n i s c e n t r e d on people, as i t i s i n t h i s  study.  The n a t u r a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e accepts the r e a l i t y t h a t the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the i n q u i r e r and the respondent o f independence but, r a t h e r , o f mutual i n f l u e n c e .  i s not  one  Finally,  n a t u r a l i s t i c i n q u i r y accepts the p r o p o s i t i o n t h a t human beheviour i s r e l a t e d t o c o n t e x t — a n o t h e r reason f o r s e e i n g d i f f e r e n c e as b e i n g a t l e a s t as important as  similarities.  Thus, because t h i s study d e a l s w i t h people's c o n c e p t i o n s of a s o c i a l phenomenon i t appears obvious t h a t a n a t u r a l i s t i c  13 paradigm  which (a) h o l d s t h a t r e a l i t y i s s o c i a l l y c o n s t r u c t e d by  the i n d i v i d u a l and cannot be reduced t o enduring statements,"  "truth  (b) acknowledges t h e i n t e r r e l a t e d n e s s o f i n q u i r e r  and respondent, and (c) seeks t o understand t h e phenomenon from the respondent's p e r s p e c t i v e , makes t h e b e s t f i t here.  In  arguing that n a t u r a l i s t i c inquiry best f i t s the research c o n d i t i o n s d e s c r i b e d here, and would not n e c e s s a r i l y be t h e c o r r e c t p e r s p e c t i v e i n every r e s e a r c h i n s t a n c e , i t i s important to  h o n e s t l y acknowledge t h a t n a t u r a l i s t i c i n q u i r y b e s t f i t s my  own v a l u e s , b i a s e s and assumptions.  S c i e n t i f i c notions of  p r e d i c t i o n and c o n t r o l a r e much l e s s r e l e v a n t , t o me, than n a t u r a l i s t i c approaches  t o understanding and meaning.  choosing t o work w i t h people  In  ( i n t h i s case, women), from a  p e r s o n a l / p o l i t i c a l f e m i n i s t p e r s p e c t i v e , I am, n e c e s s a r i l y , more i n t e r e s t e d i n "how s o c i a l o r d e r i s produced by r e v e a l i n g t h e network o f meanings out o f which t h i s o r d e r i s c o n s t i t u t e d and r e c o n s t i t u t e d by i t s members" (Carr & Kemmis, 1986, p. 85), than w i t h any view o f human behaviour as determined by impersonal, o b j e c t i v e laws, o p e r a t i n g beyond our c o n t r o l . As noted above, r a t i o n a l i s t i c and n a t u r a l i s t i c paradigms a r e r o o t e d i n d i f f e r e n t c o n c e p t i o n s o f the world, o f r e a l i t y and o f t h e uses and aims o f research.  Many c r i t i c s o f t h e  rationalistic  p e r s p e c t i v e have  p o i n t e d out t h a t although i t s t r i v e s f o r v a l u e - f r e e , knowledge, i t i s , i t s e l f ,  objective  n e c e s s a r i l y rooted i n p a r t i c u l a r  a t t i t u d e s , b e l i e f s and v a l u e s which i t , i n t u r n , s u s t a i n s  (Carr &  Kemmis, 1986; Kuhn, 1970; Millman & Kanter, 1987; S h e r i f ,  1987).  The n a t u r a l i s t i c paradigm  i s , o f course, not without  14 critics.  Those s t i l l  f i r m l y esconced  i n the t r a d i t i o n a l ,  r a t i o n a l i s t i c camp put forward o b j e c t i o n s based on t h a t p e r s p e c t i v e — m a i n l y around  i s s u e s such as v a l i d i t y ,  reliability  and o b j e c t i v i t y . S i n c e these are m e t h o d o l o g i c a l i s s u e s , I w i l l d i s c u s s them i n the next  C.  section.  The Research  Technique  So f a r , we have reframed r e s e a r c h i n terms of both focus and perspective.  Guba (1981) p o i n t s out t h a t p r a c t i t i o n e r s of the  r a t i o n a l i s t i c and n a t u r a l i s t i c paradigms, or p e r s p e c t i v e s , tend to  take c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y d i f f e r e n t approaches  of  "the p r o p e r way  t o do r e s e a r c h " (p. 79).  t o the q u e s t i o n  He sees the  p r e d i s p o s i t i o n of r a t i o n a l i s t i c p r a c t i t i o n e r s t o p r e f e r q u a n t i t a t i v e methods and n a t u r a l i s t i c p r a c t i t i o n e r s t o work with q u a l i t a t i v e methods as so entrenched t h a t "the c o n f l i c t between the two paradigms had f r e q u e n t l y been mistaken  for a conflict  between q u a n t i t a t i v e and q u a l i t a t i v e methods, a mistake  in logic  t h a t has l e d t o the g e n e r a t i o n of a g r e a t d e a l more heat then light"  (p. 78).  orthodoxy.  Guba sees t h i s ,  That may  i n some cases, as an  w e l l be t r u e ,  unnecessary  but the r e a l i t y seems t o be  t h a t t r a d i t i o n and the c o n n e c t i o n between e p i s t e m o l o g i c a l underpinnings and technique i n t e r w i n e q u a n t i t a t i v e techniques w i t h the r a t i o n a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e and q u a l i t a t i v e w i t h the n a t u r a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e . difficult  to  techniques  In o t h e r words, i t i s  separate methodology or technique from p e r s p e c t i v e ,  s i n c e the e p i s t e m o l o g i c a l foundations of a study are g e n e r a l l y  15 congruent w i t h i t s p r a c t i c e . terms q u a n t i t a t i v e and techniques,  q u a l i t a t i v e are used t o denote  not p e r s p e c t i v e s ,  Quantitative research o f formal  In the d i s c u s s i o n t h a t f o l l o w s ,  g o a l s , or u n d e r l y i n g  under study.  T h i s use  research  philosophies.  technique i s c h a r a c t e r i z e d by the  instruments t o c o l l e c t i n f o r m a t i o n  the  use  about the phenomenon  o f instruments d i s t a n c e s the  researcher  from d i r e c t c o n t a c t w i t h the " o b j e c t " of i n v e s t i g a t i o n and  is  focused  can,  on an attempt t o a v o i d b i a s and  indeed, be avoided t h i s way.  Another c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of  q u a n t i t a t i v e technique i s i t s use information  of numbers t o  provide  about the phenomenon under i n v e s t i g a t i o n .  Quantitative researchers and  a b e l i e f that bias  focus on a s i n g l e , o b j e c t i v e  reality,  s e p a r a t e t h a t r e a l i t y i n t o independently manipulated p a r t s ,  or v a r i a b l e s , whxch are then s i n g l e d out f o r i n v e s t i g a t i o n the b e l i e f t h a t they do not n e c e s s a r i l y i n f l u e n c e the parts.  Q u a n t i t a t i v e methodologists a l s o p r e f e r  in  other  b e g i n n i n g with  hypotheses, g e n e r a l l y i n the form of l a w - l i k e statements founded on a p r i o r i theory,  which are then assessed through  e x p e r i m e n t a t i o n and  observation.  Thus, i n s t r i v i n g f o r a mode of  i n q u i r y which i s c h a r a c t e r i z e d by o b j e c t i v i t y and r i g o r , q u a n t i t a t i v e technique embraces the p r o c e s s e s of  manipulation,  c o n t r o l and q u a n t i f i c a t i o n . The  majority  of p s y c h o l o g i c a l s t u d i e s , i n c l u d i n g r e s e a r c h  power, have used q u a n t i t a t i v e techniques.  Investigations  of  power have been l a r g e l y experimental, r a t h e r narrowly focused measurable b i t s of behaviour emitted in  by s u b j e c t s who  a "controlled" laboratory s i t u a t i o n .  are  As noted above,  on  on  tested the  16 major work i n terms o f i n v e s t i g a t i n g power, which r e a l l y began o n l y i n t h e m i d - f i f t i e s , has been done w i t h a focus on i n d i v i d u a l s ' need f o r power (power m o t i v a t i o n ) o r n Power ( M c C l e l l a n d , 1975; Winter,  1973).  In most cases, i n t h i s  r e s e a r c h , s u b j e c t s were not t o l d what t h e r e s e a r c h was about.  In  keeping w i t h t r a d i t i o n a l q u a n t i t a t i v e methodology, d e f i n i t i o n s of power, i n these s t u d i e s , o r i g i n a t e d w i t h t h e r e s e a r c h e r (although these d e f i n i t i o n s were subsequently m o d i f i e d through t h e findings).  "The e x i s t e n c e o f t h e power motive  taken as the p o i n t o f departure.  The i n i t i a l  i s assumed and question of  r e l e v a n c e t o them becomes one c o n c e r n i n g t h e experimental a r o u s a l and measurement o f t h e power motive"  (Ng, 1980, p.135).  Marton  and Svensson (1979) added t h a t "there i s always an i m p l i c i t assumption  t h a t i t i s known what t h e q u a l i t y i s and i t i s  necessary o n l y t o a s c e r t a i n how much o f i t can be found" (p. 476).  In n Power r e s e a r c h , attempts t o arouse t h e power motive  were made through d i f f e r e n t means such as: demonstrations; videoed speeches  hypnosis  of John F. Kennedy; and  a s s i g n i n g s u b j e c t s t o t h e r o l e o f p s y c h o l o g i c a l experimenter. Although t h e s e methods show some c r e a t i v i t y i n terms o f d e t e r m i n i n g what M c C l e l l a n d (1975) sees as a n e c e s s a r i l y "commonsense" approach  on t h e p a r t of i n v e s t i g a t o r s t o f i n d i n g  c o n d i t i o n s which should arouse the power motive, t h e experimental t e c h n i q u e s employed here cannot be seen as e n t i r e l y s i n c e any one method chosen must, o b v i o u s l y , f a l l arousing the " f u l l  satisfactory  f a r short of  range o f experience a s s o c i a t e d w i t h power"  (Ng, 1980, p. 136). Once aroused, the power motive was most o f t e n  17 measured through s e m i - p r o j e c t i v e t e s t s and q u e s t i o n n a i r e s and, s i n c e c o r r e l a t i o n a l s t u d i e s were the norm here, f a c t o r a n a l y s i s was  most commonly used on the data. In n o t i n g the  limitations  i n v o l v e d here, M c C l e l l a n d (1975) says: The f a c t o r a n a l y t i c procedure i t s e l f g i v e s cause f o r uneasiness. A notoriously imprecise t o o l , i t y i e l d s d i f f e r e n t r e s u l t s depending upon which t a g s are i n c l u d e d , how many f a c t o r s are e x t r a c t e d , and what c r i t e r i a are used f o r e x t r a c t i o n and r o t a t i o n . F i n a l l y , even a f t e r one has d i s c o v e r e d which v a r i a b l e s l o a d h i g h on a f a c t o r , t h e r e i s a f u r t h e r l a c k of p r e c i s i o n i n the way they can be i n t e r p r e t e d , (p. 28) Thus, although these s t u d i e s have undoubtedly  made a s i g n i f i c a n t  c o n t r i b u t i o n t o the understanding of power, they are not, as d i s c u s s e d above, without t h e i r problems.  As Millman and  (1987) p o i n t out, "methodological assumptions l i m i t the r e s e a c h e r ' s v i s i o n and produce  Kanter  and t e c h n i q u e s  may  questionable findings"  (p. 35). In l i n e w i t h the n a t u r a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e chosen,  this  r e s e a r c h reframes the dominant q u a n t i t a t i v e r e s e a r c h technique t o q u a l i t a t i v e methods.  Q u a l i t a t i v e r e s e a r c h e r s , r a t h e r than  s e e k i n g o b j e c t i v i t y through a " l a y e r of i n s t r u m e n t a t i o n " between themselves  and the s u b j e c t o f study, use themselves  c o l l e c t i o n instruments and, modes o f data c o l l e c t i o n .  i n so doing, move t o more i n t e r a c t i v e L i n c o l n and Guba (1985) suggest  t h i s change from non-human t o human data c o l l e c t i o n i n t r o d u c e s important elements flexibility  as the data  that  instruments  of s e n s i t i v i t y , r e s p o n s i v e n e s s and  i n t o the procedure.  A skilled  i n t e r v i e w e r i s capable  of p r o c e s s i n g and a s s e s s i n g i n f o r m a t i o n , t o some extent, as i t i s r e c e i v e d , and thus has the o p p p o r t u n i t y t o ask f o r c l a r i f i c a t i o n ,  18 e l a b o r a t i o n o r c o n c r e t e examples, as w e l l as t o check understanding/misunderstanding In u s i n g themselves  o f t h e respondent's  meaning.  as t h e main r e s e a r c h instruments,  qualitative  i n v e s t i g a t o r s cannot c l a i m t h e d i s t a n c e and o b j e c t i v i t y which q u a n t i t a t i v e r e s e a r c h e r s s t r i v e f o r ; i n s t e a d , they acknowledge the mutual i n f l u e n c e between r e s e a r c h e r and respondent  and seek,  i n t h a t , g r e a t e r f l e x i b i l i t y and t h e o p p o r t u n i t y t o b u i l d upon t a c i t as w e l l as p r o p o s i t i o n a l knowledge (Guba, 1981). D e s c r i p t i v e e x p r e s s i o n o f data i s another  distinguishing  c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of q u a l i t a t i v e research; t h i s contrasts with the n u m e r i c a l / s t a t i s t i c a l expressions of q u a n t i t a t i v e research. moving away from s t a t i s t i c a l r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s o f data,  In  qualitative  t e c h n i q u e s move from r e s u l t s which emphasize s i m i l a r i t i e s t o r e s u l t s which acknowledge v a r i a b i l i t y as being e q u a l l y significant.  Finally,  i n an attempt  t o circumvent  t h e problems  i n h e r e n t i n f i r m l y f i x i n g t h e r e s e a r c h i n a p r i o r i theory, and i n r e c o g n i z i n g t h a t " i f we move t o o q u i c k l y toward m a n i p u l a t i n g one o r two experimental v a r i a b l e s we run t h e r i s k o f i g n o r i n g t h e most important v a r i a b l e s because we have not s u f f i c i e n t l y d e s c r i b e d t h e phenomenon o f i n t e r e s t "  (Wallston & Grady, 1985, p.  11), q u a l i t a t i v e methods focus on t h e o r y emerging from t h e data. T h i s i s sometimes r e f e r r e d t o as "grounding"  theory  (Glaser &  S t r a u s s , 1967). Many o f t h e c r i t i c i s m s o f t h e q u a l i t a t i v e approach t o r e s e a r c h c e n t r e on t h e i s s u e s o f v a l i d i t y , r e l i a b i l i t y and o b j e c t i v i t y , concepts which a c t u a l l y a r i s e out o f t h e r a t i o n a l i s t i c perspective.  Validity,  i n t h i s paradigm, i s  19 g e n e r a l l y seen as a c c u r a t e i n t e r p r e t a b i l i t y , o r " t r u t h " o f t h e research r e s u l t s these r e s u l t s  ( i n t e r n a l v a l i d i t y ) and t h e g e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y o f  (external v a l i d i t y ) .  The r e l i a b i l i t y  of research  i s focused on t h e degree t o which f i n d i n g s may be r e p l i c a t e d ; i t i s t r a d i t i o n a l l y concerned of  w i t h d e s i g n and w i t h t h e c o n s i s t e n c y  methods, c o n d i t i o n s and f i n d i n g s o f r e s e a r c h .  Reliability i s  a necessary c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f v a l i d i t y ; a study cannot be v a l i d and l a c k r e l i a b i l i t y .  Wiersma (1986) notes,  " I f a study i s  u n r e l i a b l e , we can h a r d l y i n t e r p r e t t h e r e s u l t s w i t h  confidence  o r g e n e r a l i z e them t o o t h e r p o p u l a t i o n s and c o n d i t i o n s " (p. 7 ) . F i n a l l y , o b j e c t i v i t y concerns  i t s e l f w i t h e l i m i n a t i n g b i a s which  might i n f l u e n c e r e s u l t s ; i t s t r i v e s f o r methods which "render t h e study beyond contamination 1985,  by human f o i b l e s "  ( L i n c l o l n & Guba,  p. 293). The n a t u r a l i s t i c r e s e a r c h e r , u s i n g q u a l i t a t i v e methods, i s  o f t e n c r i t i c i z e d on r a t i o n a l i s t i c g r o u n d s — p a r t i c u l a r l y i n t h e areas d i s c u s s e d above.  Although  notions of r e l i a b i l i t y ,  v a l i d i t y and o b j e c t i v i t y are,  problematic  some r e s e a r c h e r s argue t h a t t h e themselves,  (Macauley, 1985; M i s h l e r , 1986; O'Leary, Unger &  W a l l s t o n , 1985; S h e r i f , 1987), Guba (1981) s t r e s s e s t h e usefulness of addressing the issue of trustworthiness i n research.  C l e a r l y , however, t r a d i t i o n a l c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n s o f  reliability,  v a l i d i t y and o b j e c t i v i t y , which have been shaped by  a r a t i o n a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e , cannot apply as they stand t o t h i s study which i s guided by a n a t u r a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e and qualitative  techniques.  Guba (1981) and L i n c o l n and Guba (1985) address t h e i s s u e o f  20 t r u s t w o r t h i n e s s i n a way  t h a t seems u s e f u l , by  reinterpreting  r e l i a b i l i t y , v a l i d i t y and o b j e c t i v i t y t o f i t the n a t u r a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e and q u a l i t a t i v e technique and t o r e f l e c t the u n d e r l y i n g assumptions  o f t h a t paradigm.  In t h e i r  r e c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n , they suggest f o u r major concerns r e l a t i n g t o t r u s t w o r t h i n e s s . The concerns a r e :  (1) t r u t h v a l u e — w h i c h i s  i n v o l v e d w i t h e s t a b l i s h i n g c o n f i d e n c e i n the t r u t h o f these r e s e a r c h f i n d i n g s , f o r the respondents and i n the c o n t e x t o f the study;  (2) a p p l i c a b i l i t y — w h i c h determines the degree t o which  f i n d i n g s o f a p a r t i c u l a r study are g e n e r a l i z a b l e t o o t h e r c o n t e x t s o r o t h e r respondents; concerned w i t h d e t e r m i n i n g how  (3) c o n s i s t e n c y — w h i c h i s s i m i l a r r e s u l t s would be i f the  r e s e a r c h were r e p l i c a t e d w i t h s i m i l a r and  (or the same) respondents;  (4) n e u t r a l i t y — w h i c h determines the impact of r e s e a r c h e r  b i a s on the r e s e a r c h f i n d i n g s . W i t h i n the r a t i o n a l i s t i c paradigm,  using quantitative  r e s e a r c h t e c h n i q u e s , t r u t h v a l u e i s demonstrated  through  internal  v a l i d i t y , by demonstrating v e r i s i m i l i t u d e between the r e s e a r c h data and the phenomena r e p r e s e n t e d by those d a t a .  As Guba (1981)  p o i n t s out, t h i s i s not such an unreasonable e x p e c t a t i o n i f we h o l d the b e l i e f t h a t t h e r e e x i s t s a s i n g l e r e a l i t y as the o b j e c t of  our study.  S i n c e even r a t i o n a l i s t i c r e s e a r c h e r s do not c l a i m  a b s o l u t e knowledge of the world, hypotheses can never be proven, but o n l y d i s p r o v e n — b y showing  that a plausible,  a l t e r n a t i v e h y p o t h e s i s c o u l d a l s o , c o n c e i v a b l y , be t r u e . the  directly  Within  framework o f n a t u r a l i s t i c i n q u i r y , which admits m u l t i p l e  r e a l i t i e s e x i s t i n g i n the minds of i n d i v i d u a l s , isomorphism i s  21 demonstrated by checking f i n d i n g s and i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s w i t h t h e sources ( i n d i v i d u a l s o r groups) o f d a t a .  I n t e r n a l v a l i d i t y then  i s t r a n s l a t e d i n t o c r e d i b i l i t y , which may be checked by c a r r y i n g out t h e r e s e a r c h  so t h a t t h e f i n d i n g s w i l l be p l a u s i b l e and  believable. In t h i s study, t h e f o l l o w i n g a c t i v i t i e s were u s e f u l regard.  First,  in this  I had ample o p p o r t u n i t y and used s e v e r a l methods  t o f a m i l i a r i z e myself w i t h t h e c o n t e x t and t o b u i l d a t r u s t i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h t h e respondents. III.  Second, an e x t e r n a l  research  This  i s d e t a i l e d i n Chapter  check on t h e c r e d i b i l i t y o f t h e  f i n d i n g s , i n t h e form o f "peer d e b r i e f i n g " was employed  t o ensure t h a t , as a r e s e a r c h e r , assumptions u n d e r l y i n g  I e x p l o r e d my own b i a s e s and  my i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s .  t h i s study i s f u l l y recorded, t r a n s c r i b e d  T h i r d , a l l data f o r and a r c h i v e d  so t h a t  the p o s s i b i l i t y o f t e s t i n g f i n d i n g s and i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s raw  data i s n o t p r e c l u d e d .  against  F i n a l l y , a modified version of the  t e s t i n g method which Guba (1981) and L i n c o l n and Guba (1985) c a l l e d "member checks" has been employed. the data  This  involved  testing  (and my i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s ) w i t h members o f my data source  group, both d u r i n g  t h e study and a f t e r i t s completion.  In t h e r a t i o n a l i s t i c paradigm, a p p l i c a b i l i t y i s determined as e x t e r n a l v a l i d i t y o r g e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y — t h a t i s , t h e r e s e a r c h must generate c o n t e x t - f r e e over time.  Cronbach (1975), however, argued t h a t a l l  generalizations material.  t r u t h statements t h a t a r e enduring  decay o r break down over time l i k e  radioactive  N a t u r a l i s t s assume t h a t g e n e r a l i z a b i l t y , o f t h e type  r e f e r r r e d t o by t h e r a t i o n a l i s t paradigm, i s not p o s s i b l e because  22  f i n d i n g s , p a r t i c u l a r l y those which express the r e s e a r c h respondent's to  e x p e r i e n c e s , are i n t i m a t e l y and i r r e v o c a b l y  c o n t e x t . As O'Leary, Unger and W a l l s t o n  " G e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y may  (1985) s t a t e ,  be p o s s i b l e o n l y when we  and s o c i e t a l c o n t e x t " (p. 6 ) .  ignore h i s t o r i c a l  T h i s , of course, does not p r e c l u d e  the p o s s i b i l i t y of some t r a n s f e r a b i l i t y between two c o n t e x t s which "may  linked  occur because o f c e r t a i n  s i m i l a r i t i e s between them" (Guba, 1981,  s i t u a t i o n s or  essential  p. 81).  Thus, i n t h i s  study, a t t e n t i o n has been p a i d t o r e l a t i n g f i n d i n g s t o c l e a r l y and f u l l y  described context.  In order t o determine  p r o b a b i l i t y of t r a n s f e r a b i l i t y I have attempted Geertz  the  t o develop what  (1973) has c a l l e d a " t h i c k d e s c r i p t i o n " of the c o n t e x t .  T h i s i n v o l v e d such matters as c a r e f u l o b s e r v a t i o n , i n f o r m a t i o n checking, and c o l l e c t i n g i n f o r m a t i o n from those f a m i l i a r w i t h the c o n t e x t . The c o n t e x t of t h i s study i s d e s c r i b e d i n the f o l l o w i n g chapter. From the r a t i o n a l i s t i c p e r s p e c t i v e , r e l i a b i l i t y  i s concerned  w i t h the c o n s i s t e n c y aspect of t r u s t w o r t h i n e s s ; i t focuses on attempting t o ensure t h a t instruments p r o v i d e s t a b l e r e s u l t s . Only then can these r e s u l t s be seen as meaningful. As we know, o n l y i f an e n q u i r y i s r e l i a b l e , can i t be v a l i d — o r ,  reframed—  o n l y i f i t i s dependable, can i t be seen as c r e d i b l e . l e v e l then, demonstrating reliability  validity  (or d e p e n d a b i l i t y ) .  (or c r e d i b i l i t y )  On  one  proves  L i n c o l n and Guba (1985) see  argument as somewhat weak, and Guba (1981),  i n d i s c u s s i n g the  i s s u e of d e p e n d a b i l i t y i n a n a t u r a l i s t i c enquiry, guided q u a l i t a t i v e methodology, p o i n t s out:  by  this  23  the concept of c o n s i s t e n c y i m p l i e s not i n v a r i a n c e (except by chance) but t r a c k a b l e v a r i a n c e - v a r i a n c e t h a t can be a s c r i b e d t o sources....The n a t u r a l i s t thus i n t e r p r e t s c o n s i s t e n c y as d e p e n d a b i l i t y , a concept t h a t embraces elements both of the s t a b i l t y i m p l i e d by the r a t i o n a l i s t i c term r e l i a b l e and of the t r a c k a b i l i t y r e q u i r e d by the e x p l a i n a b l e changes i n i n s t r u m e n t a t i o n , (p. 81) L i n c o l n and Guba (1985) suggest t h a t an  "audit t r a i l "  be  e s t a b l i s h e d , so t h a t i t i s p o s s i b l e t o examine, i n d e t a i l , the p r o c e s s t h i s end,  and the r e s u l t s of the study  for dependability.  I have documented, i n the form of audio tapes,  t r a n s c r i p t s and process/method notes, were c o l l e c t e d and analyzed  in this  both To  typed  the procedures whereby data  study.  In t h e i r d i s c u s s i o n of r e l i a b i l i t y i n phenomenographic r e s e a r c h , Renstrom, Andersson and Marton (1988) contend t h a t s i n c e c a t e g o r i e s of d e s c r i p t i o n , the main r e s u l t s  on  phenomenographic r e s e a r c h , are " d i s c o v e r e d " by the i n v e s t i g a t o r , i t would be unreasonable t o expect another r e s e a r c h e r the same m a t e r i a l t o n e c e s s a r i l y end up with i d e n t i c a l  analyzing results.  Phenomenographers, however, do i n s i s t t h a t once c a t e g o r i e s have been d i s c o v e r e d , these should be communicable t o o t h e r s . (1975) argues much t h i s same p o i n t when he  Giorgi  says:  The c o n t r o l comes from the r e s e a r c h e r s context or p e r s p e c t i v e of the data. Once the c o n t e x t and i n t e n t i o n becomes known, the divergence i s u s u a l l y i n t e l l i g i b l e t o a l l even i f not u n i v e r s a l l y agreeable. Thus the c h i e f p o i n t t o be remembered with t h i s type of r e s e a r c h i s not so much whether another p o s i t i o n with r e s p e c t t o the data c o u l d be adopted ( t h i s p o i n t i s granted beforehand), but whether a reader, adopting the same viewpoint as a r t i c u l a t e d by the r e s e a r c h e r , can a l s o see what the r e s e a r c h e r saw, whether or not he agrees with i t . That i s the key c r i t e r i o n f o r q u a l i t a t i v e r e s e a r c h , (p. 96) 1  Thus, i n t h i s study,  I a l s o used i n t e r - j u d g e r e l i a b i l i t y  t o determine d e p e n d a b i l i t y .  T h i s process,  and  testing  i t s results,  are  24  d i s c u s s e d more f u l l y i n the Chapter I I I . The  f i n a l concern f o r r e s e a r c h t r u s t w o r t h i n e s s  n e u t r a l i t y ; t h i s i s framed as o b j e c t i v i t y from the perspective Within  and  is rationalistic  c o n f i r m a b i l i t y from the n a t u r a l i s t i c  a r a t i o n a l i s t i c perspective,  guaranteed by methodology, but  perspective.  o b j e c t i v i t y i s assumed t o  i t i s now  be  obvious, even i n the  "pure" n a t u r a l s c i e n c e s , t h a t the very c h o i c e o f a methodology reflects investigator bias.  Researchers working from a  n a t u r a l i s t i c paradigm accept the r e a l i t y t h a t , as instruments of data c o l l e c t i o n , t h e i r own  p r e d i s p o s i t i o n s have a r o l e t o p l a y .  A l s o , the n a t u r a l i s t i c i n v e s t i g a t o r i s attempting not t o uncover or c o n f i r m unchanging f a c t s or some i n v a r i a n t t r u t h , but  rather  t o d i s c o v e r the meanings t h a t i n d i v i d u a l s a t t a c h t o t h e i r worlds and w i t h which they c r e a t e and focus  s u s t a i n t h e i r worlds.  i n t h i s study i s on m u t u a l l y - d e f i n e d  data must be c o n f i r m a b l e .  Thus the  understanding;  the  In the i n t e r e s t s of c o n f i r m a b i l i t y i n  t h i s study, I d i s c u s s not o n l y the r e s e a r c h  question  and  method,  but a l s o myself as i n v e s t i g a t o r i n terms of the i n t e r e s t s and o r i e n t a t i o n s I b r i n g t o t h i s study. In doing t h i s , i n t e n t i o n a l l y r e v e a l myself and my must n e c e s s a r i l y a f f e c t my  underlying  findings.  Use  I  assumptions, which  of the a u d i t t r a i l  terms o f a c o m f i r m a b i l i t y a u d i t t o v e r i f y the e x i s t e n c e which supports my  t h a t data) has,  that  of course, operated w i t h i n  the framework of defending t h i s study as " t h e s i s . " content and  o f data  i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s (as w e l l as c o n f i r m i n g  interpretations " f i t "  in  Thus,  outcome of t h i s work has been reviewed, not  through i n t e r - j u d g e r e l i a b i l i t y t e s t i n g , but a l s o by my  the  only thesis  25 committee. In p r o p o s i n g t h e above c r i t e r i a as c h e c k p o i n t s a g a i n s t which the t r u s t w o r t h i n e s s o f n a t u r a l i s t i c i n q u i r y can be judged, Guba (1981) p o i n t s out t h a t these cannot stand as a b s o l u t e guarantees against untrustworthiness. expected by n a t u r a l i s t s .  Indeed,  some l e v e l o f u n c e r t a i n t y i s  D e s p i t e t h i s , these c r i t e r i a  constitute  the most v a l i d standards, a t t h i s p o i n t , f o r j u d g i n g n a t u r a l i s t i c research.  Guba (1981) contends t h a t when a n a t u r a l i s t i c study i s  evaluated: I t i s i n a p p r o p r i a t e t o apply the r a t i o n a l i s t i c c r i t e r i a . . . u n d e r any circumstances. To suggest, f o r example, t h a t a n a t u r a l i s t i c study i s unacceptable because c o n t r o l s were n o t i n s t i t u t e d , s u b j e c t s were not randomly s e l e c t e d , i n s t r u m e n t a l r e s u l t s were not r e p l i c a t e d , o r t h e i n v e s t i g a t o r was not p r o p e r l y o b j e c t i v e i s simply u n j u s t i f i e d , (p. 88) Thus i n r e f r a m i n g t r a d i t i o n a l q u a n t i t a t i v e r e s e a r c h t e c h n i q u e t o q u a l i t a t i v e technique, t h i s study a l s o the i s s u e s o f v a l i d i t y ,  approaches  r e l i a b i l i t y and o b j e c t i v i t y from a  reframed e p i s t e m o l o g i c a l framework and a s s e s s e s these i s s u e s from that basis.  In paying p a r t i c u l a r a t t e n t i o n t o t h e importance o f  c o n t e x t , u t i l i z i n g my own r e s o u r c e s as a data  collection  instrument r a t h e r than r e l y i n g on " o b j e c t i v e " i n s t r u m e n t a t i o n , and d e s c r i b i n g r e s e a r c h r e s u l t s d e s c r i p t i v e l y r a t h e r than statistically,  t h i s study u t i l i z e s r e s e a r c h t e c h n i q u e s which  complement i t s i n t e r e s t i n women's c o n c e p t i o n s .  D.  The Research  Question  The p a r t i c u l a r focus, p e r s p e c t i v e and t e c h n i q u e s chosen f o r  26  r a r e s e a r c h p r o j e c t n e c e s s a r i l y a f f e c t and inform every aspect o f that i n v e s t i g a t i o n , i n c l u d i n g the questions i t i s p o s s i b l e t o ask.  This research, unlike t r a d i t i o n a l psychological  i n v e s t i g a t i o n s o f power, comes out o f an a t t i t u d e o f "notknowing" r a t h e r than emerging from s p e c i f i e d , hypotheses,  o r r e l y i n g on a p r i o r i t h e o r y .  preconceived  The r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n  i s thus much more g e n e r a l than t r a d i t i o n a l q u e s t i o n s and does not imply c a u s e - a n d - e f f e e t r e l a t i o n s h i p s .  T h i s study was designed t o  answer t h e f o l l o w i n g q u e s t i o n : What a r e t h e conceptions o f power h e l d by women p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n an all-woman work group? As noted, t h i s study was conducted  from t h e n a t u r a l i s t i c  p e r s p e c t i v e and used q u a l i t a t i v e t e c h n i q u e s . e x p l o r e t h e v a r i a t i o n i n t h e respondents'  I t s purpose was t o  conceptualization of  the s o c i a l phenomenon o f power as they experienced i t w i t h i n t h e i r work group. Chapter examination  I I I d i s c u s s e s t h e r e s e a r c h d e s i g n through an o f phenomenography, t h e p a r t i c u l a r  perspective u t i l i z e d  i n this inquiry.  naturalistic  Within t h i s discussion,  d e f i n e s t h e n o t i o n o f conceptions as i t i s used i n t h e r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n — a n o t i o n i n t e g r a l t o t h e conduct research.  o f phenomenographic  I t also d e l i m i t s the p a r t i c u l a r context of the a l l -  woman work group.  The c h a p t e r c o n t i n u e s w i t h a d e s c r i p t i o n o f  data c o l l e c t i o n and a n a l y s i s and concludes by r e f l e c t i n g on l i m i t a t i o n s o f t h e study.  i t  27 III.  METHODOLOGY  T h i s c h a p t e r i s intended t o p r o v i d e an understanding of both the u n d e r l y i n g concepts and the procedures t h a t guided the d e s i g n and implementation of t h i s r e s e a r c h study. t h i s work w i t h i n a p a r t i c u l a r particular  Chapter I I s i t u a t e d  perspective (naturalistic)  technique ( q u a l i t a t i v e ) .  and a  This chapter discusses  phenomenography, the s p e c i f i c type of r e s e a r c h c a r r i e d  out i n  t h i s study, and d e s c r i b e s the r e s e a r c h technique (data c o l l e c t i o n and  analysis).  A.  Phenomenoqrapahv  I n s p i r e d by the v e r y o l d human s c i e n c e t r a d i t i o n of phenomenology, an e m p i r i c a l r e s e a r c h approach aimed a t d i s c o v e r i n g and o r g a n i z i n g the ways i n which people make sense of v a r i o u s a s p e c t s o f t h e i r world a group  has been developed i n Sweden, by  i n the Department of E d u c a t i o n , a t the U n i v e r s i t y of  Gothenburg.  T h i s approach  which f i r s t appeared Ference Marton, "godfather  11  i s c a l l e d phenomenography, a term  in print  i n 1981,  i n a j o u r n a l a r t i c l e by  a member of t h a t group and sometimes c a l l e d  the  of phenomenography (Dahlgren, 1987) .  As might be expected, phenomenography i s r e l a t e d , i n some ways t o phenomenology and,  indeed, Marton has c a l l e d  times, " e m p i r i c a l phenomenology."  I t may  i t , at  be u s e f u l , then, t o  d i s c u s s the unique f e a t u r e s o f phenomenography i n the c o n t e x t of s i m i l a r i t i e s and d i f f e r e n c e s between i t and phenomenology.  The  28 fundamental c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f phenomenography, and one which d i s t i n g u i s h e s i t from phenomenology as a r e l a t i v e l y field  o f i n q u i r y , i s i t s second-order r e s e a r c h p e r s p e c t i v e  (Gibbs, 1982; Marton, put,  distinct  1981, 1988; S a l j o , 1979, 1988).  Simply  a second-order p e r s p e c t i v e attempts t o d e s c r i b e t h e world as  seen through t h e eyes o f t h e respondent; i t i s concerned, above a l l , w i t h "how t h e world i s construed by t h e a c t o r s " 1988, of  (Saljo,  p. 36). Phenomenography h o l d s as a t e n e t t h a t "the mapping  t h e hidden world o f human c o n c e p t i o n should be a  s p e c i a l i z a t i o n i n i t s own r i g h t "  (Marton, 1986, p. 3 ) . I t  i n s i s t s t h a t d e s c r i b i n g t h e way people view t h e world i s a worthy enterprise i n i t s e l f  and can stand as t h e r e s p e c t a b l e "end" o f a  r e s e a r c h endeavour.  A f i r s t - o r d e r p e r s p e c t i v e such as  phenomenology, on t h e o t h e r hand, c o n c e n t r a t e s on e x p e r i e n c e . One way o f i l l u s t r a t i n g t h e d i f f e r e n c e between a f i r s t - o r d e r and a second-order p e r s p e c t i v e i s t o c o n s i d e r s e v e r a l to  approaches  t h e r e s e a r c h t o p i c b e i n g i n v e s t i g a t e d i n t h i s study.  phenomenologist,  A  i n i n v e s t i g a t i n g women's e x p e r i e n c e o f power i n  a p a r t i c u l a r work-group, f o r i n s t a n c e , might be focused on l e a r n i n g about t h e e x p e r i e n c e o f power i n t h a t setting.  particular  A t r a d i t i o n a l p s y c h o l o g i c a l study might be i n t e r e s t e d  i n women's e x p e r i e n c e o f power i n t h e group as a way o f c e n t e r i n g on t h e p r o c e s s o f p e r c e p t i o n o r thought i t s e l f ,  i n an attempt t o  d i s c o v e r g e n e r a l laws o f thought and p e r c e p t i o n which c o u l d then be a p p l i e d t o any s i t u a t i o n o r s u b j e c t ; o r , i t might d e f i n e power and then attempt t o measure each woman's "need"  f o r power and  perhaps c o r r e l a t e t h a t w i t h b e h a v i o u r a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s .  In t h i s  29 phenomenogaphic study, however, t h e aim i s , q u i t e simply, t o l e a r n about women's conceptions o f power. A second d i f f e r e n c e  between phenomenography and  phenomenology c e n t r e s on t h e t h e l a t t e r ' s focus on t h e essence o f experience.  The n o t i o n o f essence,  i n t h i s case, r e f e r s t o  phenomenology's c o n c e n t r a t i o n on t h a t which i s common t o t h e phenomenon s t u d i e d .  In an attempt  t o d i s c o v e r t h e essence o f  power, f o r example, t h e r e s e a r c h e r would l o o k f o r agreement on a s p e c t s o f power. hand, a r e i n t e r e s t e d  Phenomenographers, on t h e other  i n the variations  i n t r a s u b j e c t i v e l y and i n t e r s u b j e c t i v e l y 1985;  intersubjective  i n experience—both (Larsson & Helmstad,  Marton, 1979, 1986). Although they a r e i n t e r e s t e d  i n v a r i a t i o n as opposed t o  i n v a r i a n t common meaning, phenomenographers do not focus on t h e idiosyncratic. consistently  In phenomenographic s t u d i e s , r e s e a r c h e r s have  d i s c o v e r e d t h a t phenomena a r e c o n c e p t u a l i z e d i n a  l i m i t e d number o f q u a l i t a t i v e l y d i f f e r e n t ways (Gibbs, Morgan & T a y l o r , 1980; Marton, 1981, 1986, 1988; Marton & S a l j o , 1976; Saljo,  1981).  " I n between t h e common and t h e i d i o s y n c r a t i c t h e r e  seems, thus, t o e x i s t a l e v e l : a l e v e l o f modes o f experience, forms o f thought,  worthwhile  s t u d y i n g " (Marton,  1981, p.  I t i s i n t e r e s t i n g t o note t h a t Marton (1984),  181).  in a  d i s c u s s i o n o f t h i s i s s u e o f phenomenography's i n t e r e s t i n v a r i a t i o n as opposed t o a f i r s t - o r d e r r e s e a r c h i n t e r e s t i n essence, essence.  introduces a d i f f e r e n t interpretation  o f t h e term  In t h i s l e s s commonly c o n s i d e r e d i n t e r p r e t a t i o n , t h e  underlying s t r u c t u r e of the f a c t u a l v a r i a t i o n obtained i n  i  30 phenomenographic r e s e a r c h c o u l d be seen as the "essence" of conception.  I t i s o n l y i n t h i s sense, " t h a t we  i n v a r i a n c e i n a s e t of v a r y i n g c o n c e p t i o n s " 62).  the  can l o o k f o r  (Marton, 1984,  p.  T h i s i s important, because phenomenography i s i n t e r e s t e d  i n , not merely the l i s t i n g of d i f f e r e n t conceptions,  but a l s o the  d i s c o v e r y of some l o g i c a l r e l a t i o n s h i p between conceptions  of  the  phenomenon i n q u e s t i o n . T h i s focus on d i s c o v e r i n g and mapping the v a r i a t i o n o f conceptions  " i n terms o f s e t s o f d i s t i n c t i v e  c a t e g o r i e s of d e s c r i p t i o n , where each category s p e c i a l conception  corresponds t o a  of a c e r t a i n phenomenon" ( I b i d , p. 61)  unique t o phenomenography and  is  c o u l d be seen as a t h i r d d i f f e r e n c e  between t h i s approach and phenomenology.  People's d e s c r i p t i o n s  of the phenomenon i n q u e s t i o n are c a t e g o r i z e d and  systemized  and  these c a t e g o r i z a t i o n s are seen as the main outcomes of phenomenographic r e s e a r c h  (Marton, 1986).  T h i s o r d e r i n g of  c a t e g o r i e s of d e s c r i p t i o n i s c a l l e d an outcome space and l i k e n e d t o a map  of i n n e r experience  i n r e l a t i o n to  the  could  be  the  phenomenon i n q u e s t i o n . In c a t e g o r i z i n g people's d e s c r i p t i o n s of t h e i r the phenomenographic r e s e a r c h e r  experience,  i s l o o k i n g f o r the d i s t i n g u i s h i n g  characteristics in conceptions—the  s i g n i f i c a n t differences that  emerge i n the ways t h a t i n d i v i d u a l s d e f i n e or e x p l a i n phenomenon b e i n g conceptions  investigated.  the  In t h i s focus on people's  of the world, the phenomenographer takes  "an  e p i s t e m o l o g i c a l p o s i t i o n where the e x i s t e n c e of a ' r e a l ' common t o a l l and  a v a i l a b l e through the  the world i s not r e c o g n i z e d "  reality,  'unbiased' o b s e r v a t i o n  ( S a l j o , 1988,  p. 37).  The  term  of  31 c o n c e p t i o n , as used here, r e f e r s t o the i n d i v i d u a l s ' understandings of the w o r l d — t h e see, so t o speak.  f i l t e r s through which people  In d e s c r i b i n g someone's e x p e r i e n t i a l  reality,  the r e s e a r c h e r must e x p l o r e , w i t h the respondent, the phenomenon i n q u e s t i o n , as i t i s understood and e x p e r i e n c e d by t h a t person. In  t h i s way,  discovery research  phenomenographic r e s e a r c h i s v e r y much an a c t of  (Gibbs, 1982).  Marton (1988) compared t h i s w i t h other  approaches:  We might say t h a t when we d e s c r i b e behaviour we are l o o k i n g at the i n d i v i d u a l , when we d e s c r i b e the "mental apparatus" we are t r y i n g t o look i n t o them and when we aim a t e x p e r i e n t i a l d e s c r i p t i o n we are t r y i n g t o l o o k with them and see the world as they see i t . (p. 7) S i n c e a c o n c e p t i o n i s a d e s c r i p t i o n of "the phenomenon as understood"  (Ibid.),  also relational.  i t i s , of course, not o n l y e x p e r i e n t i a l , but  Conceptions are not " i n h e r e n t q u a l i t i e s i n the  mind of the t h i n k e r or i n the objects/phenomena themselves" ( S a l j o , 1988,  p. 44), but i n v o l v e both the i n d i v i d u a l and the  phenomenon i n q u e s t i o n .  There can be no understanding without  the "understander," and a l l t h a t she b r i n g s t o t h a t , and can t h e r e be understanding without the "what" t o be or  apprehended.  then, are  neither  understood,  Marton (1984) p o i n t s out t h a t the r e l a t i o n s ,  between what i s b e i n g c o n c e p t u a l i z e d or p e r c e i v e d and  t h e one who  i s doing the c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g or p e r c e i v i n g .  He  sees  one of the r e s e a r c h e r ' s main t a s k s b e i n g the d i s c o v e r y and d e s c r i p t i o n of these " d i s t i n c t i v e l y d i f f e r e n t ways i n which i n d i v i d u a l s r e l a t e themselves t o v a r i o u s a s p e c t s o f t h e i r world" (p.  45).  visibility  The phenomenographic r e s e a r c h e r seeks t o b r i n g t o the world as i t i s experienced by the e x p e r i e n c e r  32 (Marton  & Svensson, 1979).  t h e s e person/world granted.  Marton (1984) reminds us out t h a t  r e l a t i o n s h i p s are o f t e n j u s t taken f o r  He b e l i e v e s t h a t r e s e a r c h has an important  function to  p l a y , i n b r i n g i n g t o l i g h t our unexamined, t a c i t b e l i e f t h a t we see and experience the world as i t a c t u a l l y i s , and t h a t o t h e r s see i t i n the same  way.  T h i s b r i n g s us t o a f o u r t h d i f f e r e n c e between phenomenology and phenomenography.  T r a d i t i o n a l phenomenology, although  also  d e a l i n g w i t h person/world  r e l a t i o n s h i p s , i n s i s t s t h a t the  r e s e a r c h e r should attempt  t o "bracket" and s e t a s i d e conceptual  thought  and focus on the world through  immediate experience.  Phenomenography, i n d e s c r i b i n g the i n d i v i d u a l ' s r e l a t i o n s h i p with the world, does not d i s t i n g u i s h between immediate experience c o n c e p t u a l thought  i n t h i s way,  but simply d e s c r i b e s the  i n d i v i d u a l ' s r e l a t i o n s w i t h the phenomenon i n q u e s t i o n . phenomenography we  " d e a l w i t h the c o n c e p t u a l and  e x p e r i e n t i a l , as w e l l as what i s thought lived"  (Marton,  I f we  1981,  p.  In  the  of as t h a t which i s  181).  accept phenomenography•s r e l a t i o n a l view of human  f u n c t i o n i n g , i t f o l l o w s t h a t conceptions are a l s o l i n k e d to context.  Gibbs  inextricably  (1982) recounts an i n t e r e s t i n g example  o f the c o n t e x t u a l nature o f c o n c e p t i o n s ; i t c e n t r e s on the work of Marton and Dahlgren, price.  Two  and  1978  concerning c h i l d r e n ' s conceptions of  d i f f e r e n t conceptions were d i s c o v e r e d :  (a) t h a t  p r i c e r e p r e s e n t s a r e l a t i o n s h i p between supply and demand, and (b) t h a t p r i c e i s r e l a t e d t o some i n n a t e v a l u e of the commodity. In a l a t e r i n v e s t i g a t i o n , Dahlgren asked two groups of t h i r t y  33 c h i l d r e n each (one group aged 11; the o t h e r aged 13), "Why bun c o s t one krona?"  Only one c h i l d i n each group demonstrated  the supply-demand c o n c e p t i o n .  However, when the q u e s t i o n ,  does a diamond r i n g c o s t more t h a t a b i c y c l e ? " was  asked,  h a l f the f i r s t group, and more t h a t h a l f of the second responded  does a  "Why almost  group  w i t h supply-demand c o n c e p t i o n s .  T h i s d i s c u s s i o n of conceptions as c o n t e x t - r e l a t e d , r a i s e s another  important p o i n t — n a m e l y ,  t h a t we cannot assume which  c o n c e p t i o n of a p a r t i c u l a r phenomenon an i n d i v i d u a l w i l l h o l d . In f a c t , respondents'  conceptions may  i n which they f i n d themselves 1985;  S a l j o , 1988).  example, new  w e l l v a r y w i t h the context  (Johansson,  Conceptions may  l e a r n i n g or experience  Marton & Svensson,  a l s o change with, f o r (Marton,  1981).  d i f f e r e n t c o n c e p t i o n s can be h e l d , not o n l y by i n d i v i d u a l s , but by the same person, who  Thus  different  might h o l d s e v e r a l , even  c o n t r a d i c t o r y , conceptions a t the same time.  Phenomenographers  do not use c o n c e p t i o n s t o l a b e l or judge people, nor do they  see  c a t e g o r i e s of d e s c r i p t i o n as r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of c e r t a i n groups of people.  Instead, they f i n d i t u s e f u l t o t h i n k of the outcome  space as "an a b s t r a c t system of d e s c r i p t i o n , a g i g a n t i c space of c a t e g o r i e s , i n which the i n d i v i d u a l s move-more o r l e s s  freely-  back and  earlier,  forth"  (Marton,  1984,  p. 62).  As p o i n t e d out  phenomenographic r e s e a r c h e r s have e m p i r i c a l l y demonstrated, again and a g a i n , t h a t when conceptions are o r g a n i z e d i n t o c a t e g o r i e s of d e s c r i p t i o n , a l i m i t e d number of q u a l i t a t i v e l y c o n c e p t i o n s are found.  "The  different  s e t o f c a t e g o r i e s i s thus s t a b l e  and  g e n e r a l i z a b l e between s i t u a t i o n s , even i f the i n d i v i d u a l s 'move'  34  from one c a t e g o r y t o another on d i f f e r e n t o c c a s i o n s " 1984,  (Marton,  p.62). In r e g a r d t o t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p between c o n c e p t i o n s and  c a t e g o r i e s o f d e s c r i p t i o n s , conceptions a r e demonstrated by some one  i n r e l a t i o n t o some t h i n g i n t h e r e a l world.  be seen as mental " a c t s . " description,  Conceptions can  In d e p i c t i n g c a t e g o r i e s o f  "a d i s t i n c t i o n i s thus made between t h e a c t o f  e x p e r i e n c i n g o r c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g a phenomenon and t h e c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n o f the s t r u c t u r e and meaning o f t h a t a c t " (Renstrom, Andersson & Marton, 1988, p. 12). The a c t o f c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g has p s y c h o l o g i c a l r e a l i t y ; c a t e g o r i e s o f d e s c r i p t i o n s a r e a b s t r a c t e d from t h a t r e a l i t y  (Ibid).  When we  t u r n from d i s c u s s i n g conceptions t o c a t e g o r i e s o f d e s c r i p t i o n , we i g n o r e , f o r t h e moment, what Marton (1981) r e f e r s t o as: the d y n a m i c - a c t i v i t y p e r s p e c t i v e . . . a n d we c o n s i d e r t h e c a t e g o r i e s almost as i f they were " f r o z e n " forms o f thought. The r e l a t i o n s h i p between c o n c e p t i o n as an a c t o f c o n c e i v i n g and c o n c e p t i o n as a category o f d e s c r i p t i o n resembles the r e l a t i o n s h i p between Lewis C a r o l l ' s s m i l i n g c a t and t h e s m i l e t h a t i s l e f t when the c a t i s separated from t h e smiling. (p. 196) Each c o n c e p t i o n , o r category o f d e s c r i p t i o n , then, stands as a unique way o f v i e w i n g o r understanding the world, and i s q u a l i t a t i v e l y d i f f e r e n t from o t h e r c o n c e p t i o n s o f t h e same phenomenon.  I t i s p o s s i b l e , a l s o , t o see v a r i a t i o n i n t h e  i n t e r n a l s t r u c t u r e of the conception.  This v a r i a t i o n i s a result  of what t h e e x p e r i e n c e r focuses on o r emphasizes; i t i s a r e f l e c t i o n o f p e r s p e c t i v e — o f t h e p o i n t o f view from which the scene encompassing t h e c o n c e p t i o n i s seen.  "It i s a variation in  the f i g u r e - g r o u n d s t r u c t u r e superimposed on t h a t scene"  35 (Renstrom, Andersson & Marton, 1989, Theman (1983),  p.  50).  i n h i s study of c i t i z e n s *  c o n c e p t i o n s of  p o l i t i c a l power, argues t h a t each c o n c e p t i o n can be d i s c u s s e d i n two  d i f f e r e n t ways.  The noematic aspect of a c o n c e p t i o n r e f e r s  t o i t s "what" component, and d e s c r i b e s a s p e c t s of the phenomenon i n terms o f what the i n d i v i d u a l understands o t h e r hand, the "how" way  i t t o be.  On  the  component of the d e s c r i p t i o n focuses on the  i n which the understood  i s apprehended.  T h i s i s the n o e t i c  aspect, and i t addresses the l o g i c a l r e l a t i o n s h i p between c o n c e p t i o n s o f d i f f e r e n t phenomena (Marton,  1984).  and n o e t i c a s p e c t s of conceptions can o n l y be  The  noematic  theoretically  s e p a r a t e d ; i n r e a l i t y , they cannot e x i s t a p a r t from one  another  (Lybeck, Marton, Stromdahl & T u l b e r g , 1987). Phenomenography can thus be seen as a r e l a t i v e l y r e s e a r c h approach.  unique  C a l l e d , a t times, " e m p i r i c a l phenomenology,"  i t shares w i t h phenomenology a r e l a t i o n a l , e x p e r i e n t i a l approach t o d i s c o v e r i n g the way a s p e c t s of t h e i r world. a second-order "essence,"  i n which i n d i v i d u a l s see and c o n c e p t u a l i z e U n l i k e phenomenology, however, i t adopts  p e r s p e c t i v e , focuses on v a r i a t i o n r a t h e r than  f i n d s i t unnecessary  t o attempt  t o focus on p r e -  r e f l e c t i v e t h i n k i n g , and d i s c o v e r s c a t e g o r i e s of d e s c r i p t i o n  and  o r g a n i z e s these i n t o an outcome space which i s a s y s t e m i z a t i o n of the v a r i a t i o n i n conceptions of the p a r t i c u l a r phenomenon under investigation.  T h i s type of r e s e a r c h i s c a r r i e d out w i t h i n a  n a t u r a l i s t i c approach,  using q u a l i t a t i v e research techniques.  following sections w i l l discuss t h i s i n d e t a i l .  The  36  B.  As noted i n Chapter  Data C o l l e c t i o n  I I , m e t h o d o l o g i c a l procedures,  such as  those f o l l o w e d i n data c o l l e c t i o n and data a n a l y s i s a r i s e out o f the p a r t i c u l a r r e s e a r c h p e r s p e c t i v e chosen.  G l a s e r and S t r a u s s  (1967) p o i n t e d out t h a t t h e adequacy o f r e s u l t s cannot be s e p a r a t e d from t h e p r o c e s s e s which generate these  1. Context:  results.  P a r t i c i p a n t s and S e t t i n g  Participants The p a r t i c i p a n t s i n t h i s study were UBC women graduate students i n C o u n s e l l i n g Psychology who were e n r o l l e d i n t h e course CNPS 588, and who were members o f t h e " g e n d e r - f a i r "  (or  "women's") c l i n i c team, as w e l l as t h e i n s t r u c t o r / s u p e r v i s o r o f t h i s team. 1990  The main r e s e a r c h p r o j e c t i n v o l v e d t h e e n t i r e 1989-  c l i n i c team:  s i x Master's  l e v e l s t u d e n t s ; one D o c t o r a l  l e v e l s u p e r v i s o r - i n - t r a i n i n g ; and t h e c l i n i c s u p e r v i s o r — a UBC instructor.  I n a d d i t i o n t o these e i g h t , two women who had been  members o f p r e v i o u s years* c l i n i c teams were i n t e r v i e w e d f o r t h e pilot  study. In  t h e case o f t h e major study, access t o t h e group was  gained by c o n t a c t i n g t h e s u p e r v i s i n g p r o f e s s o r and meeting w i t h her, i n person, t o e x p l a i n my r e s e a r c h i n t e r e s t , aims and methodology.  She then agreed t o approach t h e group i n order t o  g i v e them a v e r y b r i e f overview  o f t h e proposed  research project  and t o ask them i f they had any i n t e r e s t i n v o l u n t e e r i n g t o be i n t e r v i e w e d f o r a study concerned w i t h women's c o n c e p t i o n s o f  37  power. or  She assured the group t h a t they were, i n no way,  expected  r e q u i r e d t o p a r t i c i p a t e i n t h i s study, and suggested t h a t , i f  they were i n t e r e s t e d , they might i n v i t e me t o meet w i t h them t o g i v e them more i n f o r m a t i o n and answer any q u e s t i o n s they might have. The group agreed t h a t they were i n t e r e s t e d i n h e a r i n g more about the proposed concerned was  study; a t the same time, they were v e r y  about l o s i n g v a l u a b l e " c l i n i c time."  Accordingly, I  i n v i t e d t o meet w i t h the group one morning, a h a l f hour  b e f o r e t h e i r c l i n i c work o f f i c i a l l y began f o r the day.  I, a t  t h a t time, more f u l l y e x p l a i n e d the r e s e a r c h p r o c e s s ; r e i t e r a t e d , a g a i n , the v o l u n t a r y nature of t h e i r p a r t i c i p a t i o n ; and answered t h e i r questions.  The c o n v e r s a t i o n was  members demonstrated  c u r i o s i t y and i n t e r e s t i n the p r o j e c t  somewhat spontaneously, unanimously group member, who group members.  focused and l i v e l y ;  was  absent, was  group and  agreed t o p a r t i c i p a t e .  later " f i l l e d  One  i n " by o t h e r  She expressed i n t e r e s t i n t a l k i n g t o me  further;  I c o n t a c t e d her p r i v a t e l y and answered her q u e r i e s , and she, too, agreed t o p a r t i c i p a t e . p r o f e s s o r was  not p r e s e n t a t the meeting  the r e s e a r c h e r . own  I t should be noted t h a t the s u p e r v i s i n g  I t was  between the group and  understood t h a t she would c o n s i d e r her  w i l l i n g n e s s t o p a r t i c i p a t e i n the r e s e a r c h and t h a t , whatever  her d e c i s i o n , the p r o j e c t would proceed w i t h the r e s t of the group,  i f the remaining members agreed t o p a r t i c i p a t e .  s u p e r v i s o r consequently decided t o p a r t i c i p a t e f u l l y  The  i n the  s t u d y — a d e c i s i o n which has e n r i c h e d t h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n of women's c o n c e p t i o n s of power.  38 Borg and G a l l ' s  (1979) suggestions f o r improving the r a t e of  v o l u n t e e r i n g and f o r m i n i m i z i n g a t t r i t i o n were u t i l i z e d i n t h i s study i n the f o l l o w i n g ways: 1.  In a d d r e s s i n g the group, I made the appeal  i n t e r e s t i n g as p o s s i b l e .  as  S i n c e the t a r g e t p o p u l a t i o n was  an  woman work group, i t seemed t o f o l l o w t h a t a group of women  allwho,  f o r the most p a r t , had chosen t o work w i t h i n t h a t p a r t i c u l a r group because of a common i n t e r e s t i n c o u n s e l l i n g women, would f i n d the s u b j e c t of women's conceptions of power an one.  interesting  These women might a l s o be expected t o show some i n t e r e s t i n  p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n a r e s e a r c h study a t the Master's  l e v e l , since  most of them had not begun t h e i r t h e s i s work and,  thus, might  a n t i c i p a t e l e a r n i n g something about the r e s e a r c h p r o c e s s their  through  participation. 2.  I p r e s e n t e d the p r o s p e c t of p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n the study  as b e i n g n o n t h r e a t e n i n g so t h a t p o t e n t i a l v o l u n t e e r s would not be put o f f by unwarranted f e a r s of b e i n g somehow e v a l u a t e d u n f a v o u r a b l y because of t h e i r p a r t i c i p a t i o n .  Thus I addressed  such i s s u e s as p r i v a c y and c o n f i d e n t i a l i t y and assured the group t h a t p a r t i c i p a n t s would be not be i d e n t i f i e d and, p o s s i b l e , would not be i d e n t i f i a b l e .  as f a r as  I r a i s e d these i s s u e s e a r l y  i n our meeting t o g e t h e r , and took p a i n s then and,  again, when  meeting w i t h i n d i v i d u a l s i n the i n t e r v i e w s i t u a t i o n t o assure them t h a t I would t r e a t t h e i r d i s c l o s u r e s w i t h the utmost r e s p e c t — f o r t h e i r sakes and f o r the sakes of group members might be d i s c u s s e d d u r i n g the i n t e r v i e w .  who  Students were a l s o  assured t h a t t h e i r t r a n s c r i p t s would not be reproduced  in their  39 totality  i n the t h e s i s  identify  individuals—particularly  nature,  and t h a t  concerned.  f r o m an e t h i c a l p o i n t facilitating situation 3.  honest,  which,  This  It  and s t r e s s e d  p a r t i c u l a r group counselling  as  r e f l e c t e d i n the  power d y n a m i c s 5.  findings,  as  s t e p number t h r e e , o f power a s  I  discussed  might f a c i l i t a t e or d i s r u p t it  was n o t p o s s i b l e  to participants,  own f u t u r e r e s e a r c h .  to date,  I  In  this in  involving  share  k e e p i n g w i t h Borg  of  respondents  how  together. or  research  individuals  in  requested  in  one its  respondent entirety;  have r e q u e s t e d s p e c i f i c a d v i c e  and G a l l ' s  an  research  to the p a r t i c u l a r  the research f i n d i n g s ;  three respondents  work  to  t o o f f e r e i t h e r payment  did offer to  relating  All  important  women's  i n f o r m a t i o n r e l a t e d t o t h e i r own p r o s p e c t i v e 6.  to  women  and t o an u n d e r s t a n d i n g  r e q u e s t e d a copy o f h e r i n t e r v i e w t r a n s c r i p t and,  These  feminists.  being p a r t i c u l a r l y  o f women and p o w e r ,  academic m a t e r i a l  communication  research  perspective.  method e m p l o y e d , and i n f o r m a t i o n w h i c h m i g h t a i d their  the  data.  t h e empowering o f women i n t h e w o r l d and who,  Although  courtesy g i f t s  interview  o f women, most o f whom saw t h e i r m a i n f o c u s  views  understanding  of  interview  importance of  from a f e m i n i s t  the  important  w h i c h seemed p a r t i c u l a r l y s i g n i f i c a n t  Further to  counsellors'  of  a l s o served the purpose  e x c e p t i o n , d e f i n e d themselves  4.  consent  open communication w i t h i n t h e is  would  "sensitive"  a p p r o a c h seemed, t o me,  of view.  of course,  were c o n s i d e r a t i o n s  a  the express  The t h e o r e t i c a l and p r a c t i c a l  was a d d r e s s e d  i n f o r m a t i o n which  information of  w o u l d n o t be d i v u l g e d w i t h o u t  individual  without  itself,  research.  suggestion that  the  or  40  request  f o r v o l u n t e e r i n g be made by a woman o f h i g h s t a t u s , t h e  i n i t i a l request  was presented by t h e c l i n i c  supervisor/instructor.  The r e s e a r c h e r ' s  own s t a t u s was probably  enhanced by s e v e r a l f a c t o r s , i n c l u d i n g t h e p o s i t i v e e v a l u a t i o n o f both t h e proposed r e s e a r c h supervisor.  and t h e r e s e a r c h e r  by t h e c l i n i c  Subsequent feedback from v o l u n t e e r  respondents  a l e r t e d me t o t h e p o s i t i v e e f f e c t t h a t t h i s had on t h e i r decisions to participate. 7.  Although t h e i n t e r v i e w s were time-consuming i n t h e l i g h t  of graduate s t u d e n t s '  busy schedules,  I made every e f f o r t t o  ensure t h a t t h e i n t e r v i e w s were as n o n - s t r e s s f u l as p o s s i b l e f o r p a r t i c i p a n t s . Some o f my e f f o r t s i n t h i s d i r e c t i o n i n c l u d e d : scheduling  a t t h e respondent's convenience; conducting  interviews, office,  depending on t h e p a r t i c i p a n t ' s wish, i n h e r home o r  i n t h e home o f t h e i n t e r v i e w e r ,  o r i n an o f f i c e on  campus; o f f e r i n g , when p o s s i b l e , refreshments such as t e a o r c o f f e e ; attempting t o be r e s p e c t f u l o f time c o n s t r a i n t s t h e respondent might be o p e r a t i n g under (although,  a c t u a l l y , most  i n t e r v i e w s went over t h e i n i t i a l l y - p r o p o s e d time o f one and a h a l f t o two hours, i t was t h e p a r t i c i p a n t ' s c h o i c e t o c o n t i n u e the d i s c u s s i o n ) ; and communicating an honest r e s p e c t and a p p r e c i a t i o n f o r t h e p a r t i c i p a n t — h e r views and b e l i e f s and, some cases, 8.  h e r very honest s t r u g g l e s w i t h  these.  In my meeting w i t h t h e group, I s t r e s s e d t h e normative  nature o f volunteering students,  in  f o r research,  p a r t i c u l a r l y f o r graduate  who not o n l y would be i n t e r e s t e d i n t h e r e s e a r c h p e r  se, but who a l s o would, i n t h e f u t u r e , be faced w i t h r e c r u i t i n g  41 v o l u n t e e r s f o r t h e i r own p r o j e c t s . 9. The i n i t i a l request f o r v o l u n t e e r s was p r e s e n t e d by someone "known" t o t h e p r o s p e c t i v e respondents, and she p e r s o n a l i z e d t h e request by s h a r i n g h e r own r e g a r d f o r t h e researcher.  Although I was not p e r s o n a l l y known (except by t h e  s u p e r v i s o r and t h e s u p e r v i s o r - i n - t r a i n i n g ) , I had t h e advantage of b e i n g a " s e n i o r " student i n t h e same department  as t h e  respondents and, f u r t h e r , shared w i t h them t h e e x p e r i e n c e o f h a v i n g p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h e women's c l i n i c group as w e l l as a commitment t o c o u n s e l l i n g women. 10. Although Borg and G a l l suggest t h a t i n s i t u a t i o n s where v o l u n t e e r i n g i s regarded as normative, a c a l l f o r p u b l i c commitment t o v o l u n t e e r i s l i k e l y t o be most s u c c e s s f u l , I chose t o g i v e group members t h e o p t i o n o f making t h e i r c h o i c e p r i v a t e . The group, however, took t h e i n i t i a t i v e t o opt f o r e n t h u s i a s t i c , public  commitment.  I n f o r m a t i o n gathered through i n t e r v i e w s and q u e s t i o n n a i r e s (see  Appendix B) p o r t r a y s t h e respondents as a heterogenous  i n some ways and, a t t h e same time, s i m i l a r ,  group  i n c e r t a i n respects.  The p a r t i c i p a n t s ranged i n age from 27 t o 57 y e a r s w i t h a mean age o f 40 y e a r s and a median age o f 36.  A t t h e time o f t h e  i n t e r v i e w s , f i v e o f t h e women were married o r l i v i n g w i t h a man; t h r e e were not.  Two o f t h e married women r e v e a l e d t h a t they were  s t r u g g l i n g w i t h s e r i o u s d i f f i c u l t i e s i n t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s with t h e i r spouses. American  S i x o f t h e women were Canadian born, one was  born, and one was born i n Kenya.  One woman possessed an  Ed.D.; two possessed M.A.'s: (one, i n C o u n s e l l i n g Psychology and  42  t h e o t h e r i n S p o r t s P s y c h o l o g y ) ; one possessed an M.Ed.; and f o u r possessed  B.A.'s.  T h e i r p r o f e s s i o n a l backgrounds v a r i e d .  Two o f  the women had f a i r l y e x t e n s i v e v o l u n t e e r e x p e r i e n c e i n c o u n s e l l i n g , w h i l e two o t h e r s (the i n s t r u c t o r and t h e s u p e r v i s o r i n - t r a i n i n g ) had worked p r o f e s s i o n a l l y i n t h i s a r e a . p r o f e s s i o n a l experience included:  Other  t e a c h i n g a t t h e C o l l e g e and  U n i v e r s i t y l e v e l ; t e a c h i n g a t t h e elementary  school l e v e l ; sports  c o a c h i n g ; and b u s i n e s s - r e l a t e d employment. Four o f t h e e i g h t group members j o i n e d t h e Women's C l i n i c as a clear-cut,  f i r s t c h o i c e on t h e i r p a r t s .  Comments such as,  " T h i s i s my utmost c h o i c e ! " o r , " I t ' s where I wanted t o f o c u s ; " and,  " F o r me, i t was a n a t u r a l p r o g r e s s i o n . . . t o go i n t o t h e  Women's C l i n i c , " a r e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f these women's d e s c r i p t i o n s of  how they g o t themselves  remaining one  to this particular clinic.  Of t h e  f o u r p a r t i c i p a n t s , two had come t o Women's C l i n i c as  o f s e v e r a l e q u a l l y a t t r a c t i v e c h o i c e s , and two had chosen  Women's C l i n i c as t h e i r second c h o i c e . All initially  e i g h t members o f t h e C l i n i c Team, even those few who had e x p e r i e n c e d some apprehension,  expressed t h a t they  were, a t t h i s p o i n t , happy t o have ended up on t h e Women's C l i n i c team.  F, f o r example,  expressed:  At f i r s t , I wasn't s u r e . . . i f a n y t h i n g I was probably, maybe even a l i t t l e d i s a p p o i n t e d . And a l i t t l e b i t apprehensive..I wasn't a t a l l sure...and t h e n — I ' m r e a l l y delighted! I'm n o t a t a l l r e g r e t f u l t h a t t h i s i s t h e way i t ' s t u r n e d out. (F-6,7)*  •Throughout t h i s document, quotes by t r a n s c r i p t l e t t e r (F) f o l l o w e d N o n l e x i c a l e x p r e s s i o n s and pauses o r i g i n a l t r a n s c r i p t s . I n i t i a l s do names.  from t r a n s c r i p t s a r e i d e n t i f i e d by page number(s) ( F - 6 , 7 ) . a r e i n c l u d e d here as i n t h e n o t correspond t o respondents'  43  When asked i f t h e i r membership i n Women's C l i n i c i m p l i e d a commitment t o working p r i m a r i l y w i t h women, as p r o f e s s i o n a l counsellors,  seven o f t h e women i n d i c a t e d t h a t t h i s was  d e f i n i t e l y t r u e f o r them.  C s t a t e d h e r p o s i t i o n as, " I choose t o  work w i t h women because we're so important"  and, " I t h i n k i t ' s a  v e r y v i a b l e c h o i c e t o say, 'No, I don't want t o work w i t h men! I want t o work w i t h women! I l i k e women" ( C - 5 ) .  Another  c o u n s e l l o r - i n - t r a i n i n g , G, commented: " I t h i n k , because o f t h e way my focus i s changing, i n terms o f f e m i n i s t i s s u e s e t c . , I j u s t t h i n k t h a t I have, maybe you c o u l d say, more o f a c a l l i n g t o work w i t h women than men" (G-7). h e r s e l f as e v o l v i n g  One o f t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s saw  i n t h e d i r e c t i o n o f choosing t o work  p r i m a r i l y w i t h women but d i d n ' t see t h a t as a f i n a l commitment a t t h a t time.  She says, a t one p o i n t ,  " I t h i n k I f e e l b e t t e r about  w o r k i n g — f o c u s i n g — o n women, because i t has a l o t t o do w i t h me. L i k e . . t h i s i s my journey as w e l l , you know" ( F - 9 ) . point,  A t another  she s t a t e s t h a t she p l a n s t o work as a s p e c i a l needs  c o u n s e l l o r w i t h men and women, f o r a p e r i o d o f time, and she says: So, I ' l l have a chance t o t e s t i t and s o r t o f have a ( s i c ) o p p o r t u n i t y t o make..to f a c e t h a t d e c i s i o n again, and t o f i n d o u t i f I've made t h e r i g h t c h o i c e , because I ' l l have a chance t o see i f I enjoy working w i t h men, as w e l l . ( F - 8 ) All  e i g h t women expressed t h a t t h e i r commitment t o work w i t h  women was based on t h e i r own experience, as women, i n t h e world. D says, "Well,  I guess i t g e t s down t o my f e e l i n g s o f  powerlessness, you know, t h a t I've had i n my l i f e , " (D-5)  44 and,  "In  general,  differential  I  feel  in this  own... outrage  is  differential"  (D-8).  way,  "It  s o c i e t y . . . and I  a bit  strong..but  a one-sided g u e s s I'm  my own a n g e r  A n o t h e r woman, A ,  power  just  e x p r e s s i n g my  a t t h e power  expresses  i n v o l v e s . . f o r m e . . e m p o w e r i n g women. I  uh..coming  her focus  see m y s e l f  this  as  f r o m a b a c k g r o u n d where women w e r e n ' t e q u a l . . . a n d  always fought own p e r s o n a l world"  that there's  against that" experience of  (C-5).  And H  (A-3).  C says,  "It  I've  comes o u t o f my  f e e l i n g completely powerless  in  the  states:  I t comes o u t o f my b a c k g r o u n d . . i t comes o u t o f my u p b r i n g i n g w h i c h . . . a g a i n . . i s b e i n g a w o m a n — o n e — a n d b e i n g a woman f r o m a different culture. W e ' r e t a u g h t . . v e r y much s o , t h a t t h i s i s a . . . . m a n ' s w o r l d . . a n d t h a t we h a v e no p l a c e i n t h i s m a n ' s world. (H-4) As n o t e d , a l l feminists.  women i d e n t i f i e d t h e m s e l v e s  Although t h e i r personal understandings  v a r i e d somewhat, women, and  eight  (b)  acknowledged  two common themes w e r e :  some acknowledgement  existing  (a)  members, "being"  this (ex.  "action"  aspect  group,  of being feminist  self-respecting,  "being concerned about"  "acting  on t h e  feminist.  self-nurturing); (ex.  "affirming"  (ex.  equal  on—both personally  and s o c i a l l y "  (ex.  valuing  (women);  and,  (ex.  worth  how women c a n  "supporting"  "empowering"  range:  women; women's  (ex.  degree  Among team  theirs);  equally with the male);  The  "feminist"  ran the f o l l o w i n g  and r e s o u r c e s ) ;  rightfully  of  redress  o f t h e word  involved in being  "valuing/respecting"  is  the valuing  seemed t o h i n g e  b e i n g a woman);  what  term  i n e q u a l i t i e s b e t w e e n men and women.  f o r w a r d by women i n t h i s  and d i r e c t i o n o f  of the  o f t h e need t o  m a i n d i f f e r e n c e among p e r s o n a l d e f i n i t i o n s put  as  claim  treatment); the  "being  female an  45 advocate  f o r " (ex. women's r i g h t s and equal o p p o r t u n i t i e s ) .  In summary, t h e respondents  were e i g h t women who comprised  the t o t a l membership o f an all-woman work g r o u p — i n t h i s case, a team o f c o u n s e l l o r s and c o u n s e l l o r s - i n - t r a i n i n g . ranged  The women  i n age from t w e n t y - s i x t o f i f t y - s e v e n y e a r s and were a  f a i r l y mixed group i n terms o f l i f e experience, work experience and c o u n s e l l i n g e x p e r i e n c e .  Although t h e i r backgrounds and  v a l u e s d i f f e r e d somewhat, a l l e i g h t d e s c r i b e d i n s t a n c e s o f having experienced powerlessness  o r d e v a l u a t i o n , i n some way, as "women"  i n t h e world, and/or r e p o r t e d having observed experiences.  A l l expressed  o t h e r women i n such  f e m i n i s t v a l u e s which i n c l u d e d  v a l u i n g and s u p p o r t i n g o t h e r women.  S i n c e , i n phenomenographic  r e s e a r c h t h e c o n t e x t i s accorded g r e a t importance,  we w i l l now  d i s c u s s t h e group s e t t i n g i n some d e t a i l .  Setting The a c t u a l context o f t h i s study was a UBC c l i n i c a l l a b o r a t o r y f o r women graduate The  training  students i n C o u n s e l l i n g Psychology.  focus o f t h e work and t r a i n i n g was t h e c o u n s e l l i n g o f women,  and t h e format,  an all-woman w o r k / t r a i n i n g group, l o c a t e d o f f  campus a t a government-sponsered Women's Employment C o u n s e l l i n g Unit  (WECU).  One day a week, f o r t h e e n t i r e academic year  (September-April), t h e above-described  group o f s i x c o u n s e l l o r s -  i n - t r a i n i n g , one s u p e r v i s o r - i n - t r a i n i n g , and t h e i r s u p e r v i s o r worked w i t h i n t h e l a r g e r c o n f i n e s o f o f f i c e s and group rooms occupied by WECU, u t i l i z i n g a l a r g e meeting room and s e v e r a l c o u n s e l l i n g rooms equipped w i t h v i e w i n g windows and v i d e o and  46  audio equipment. Although t h i s Women's C l i n i c Group operated,  i n most  r e s p e c t s , v e r y independently o f WECU, r e l a t i o n s between t h e two groups were f r i e n d l y and c o o p e r a t i v e . w i t h employment-related  C l i e n t s coming i n t o WECU  i s s u e s were i n i t i a l l y  i n t e r v i e w e d and  assessed by WECU c o u n s e l l o r s , and those c l i e n t s judged t o be d e a l i n g with f a c t o r s not d i r e c t l y r e l a t e d t o v o c a t i o n a l issues were r e f e r r e d , by t h e agency i n t a k e c o u n s e l l o r , t o the Women's C l i n i c Team f o r p e r s o n a l c o u n s e l l i n g .  Counsellors-in-training  worked w i t h these c l i e n t s on an ongoing b a s i s throughout t h e academic year, under the d i r e c t i o n o f t h e i r D o c t o r a l s u p e r v i s o r i n - t r a i n i n g and t h e i r s u p e r v i s o r , a UBC i n s t r u c t o r . In a d d i t i o n to counselling individual c l i e n t s , the counsellors-in-training designed and r a n s e v e r a l day-long group workshops, d u r i n g t h e year, on t h e t o p i c o f "Women's Self-Esteem." A s i d e from the obvious "convenience" student respondents, o t h e r reasons.  a s p e c t s o f choosing  t h i s s e t t i n g was a t t r a c t i v e f o r s e v e r a l  First,  i t p r o v i d e d , i n i t s setup, numerous  o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r i n t e r a c t i o n among the i n d i v i d u a l team members. Being both a work group and a t r a i n i n g group ( s u p e r v i s e d , i n p a r t , by a D o c t o r a l student who, l i k e t h e r e s t o f t h e group, was s u p e r v i s e d by t h e i n s t r u c t o r ) ,  i t seemed reasonable t o assume  t h a t o p p o r t u n i t i e s would a r i s e , throughout  t h e year, f o r v a r i o u s  members o f t h e group t o experience, i n some way, power dynamics. A l s o , t h e s e l e c t e d s e t t i n g p r o v i d e d the o p p o r t u n i t y t o assess t h e e x p e r i e n c e o f women who had,  f o r the most p a r t , chosen t o work i n  an all-women s e t t i n g and t o focus on working p r i m a r i l y w i t h women  47  once they completed t h e i r t r a i n i n g .  F i n a l l y , as noted above, a l l  o f the c o u n s e l l o r s - i n - t r a i n i n g , as w e l l as the i n s t r u c t o r , s e l f - i d e n t i f i e d as f e m i n i s t s , and norms around v a l u i n g and s e t t i n g provided members who,  access  supporting  supervising accepted  o t h e r women.  Thus,  the  t o an all-woman work group comprised of  because of t h e i r i n t e r e s t s and p e r s p e c t i v e s , as w e l l  as because o f t h e i r dual s t a t u s as students would be sympathetic t o and  and  counsellors,  i n t e r e s t e d i n the r e s e a r c h  i n v o l v e d and thus be w i l l i n g p a r t i c i p a n t s i n t h i s The  feminist  s e t t i n g was  perspectives.  The  the scheduled  and  study.  d e s c r i b e d by group members from  first  aims  two  i n v o l v e s a r e l a t i v e l y f a c t u a l account of  ordered  events of a c l i n i c day;  f a c t u a l i n f o r m a t i o n about c l i n i c presented  this,  like  at the beginning  the of  t h i s section, i s a f i r s t - o r d e r perspective, involving 11  statements-about-real i t y "  (Marton, 1981,  p. 188).  The  second-  order p e r s p e c t i v e d e a l s , not with a commonly agreed-upon, v e r i f i a b l e r e a l i t y , but with t h e i r personal reality  i n d i v i d u a l team members' sense of  r e l a t i o n s with that s e t t i n g — t h e i r "perceived"  (Marton, 1981) .  F i r s t - o r d e r i n f o r m a t i o n on "how" was  the c l i n i c team  operated  c o l l e c t e d from the s u p e r v i s o r s , d u r i n g i n t e r v i e w s , and  corroborated  by c l i n i c team members.  b e g i n s a t nine a.m.  The  c l i n i c day  was  officially  with the e n t i r e group coming t o g e t h e r  l a r g e meeting room t o get the " a d m i n i s t r i v i a " out o f the T h i s t y p i c a l l y i n v o l v e s d e a l i n g with s c h e d u l i n g  issues  i n the way.  ( i . e . new  c l i e n t s ; which c o u n s e l l o r s are working with which c l i e n t s ; appointment times;  a s s i g n i n g viewing  rooms e t c . ) .  The  group then  48 d e a l s w i t h u n f i n i s h e d b u s i n e s s from the week b e f o r e w i t h concerns t h a t i n d i v i d u a l s may t h e i r work w i t h c l i e n t s .  have around any  aspect  T h i s p a r t of the hour u s u a l l y  o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r the s h a r i n g of i n f o r m a t i o n The  as w e l l  as  of provides  among team members.  team i n s t r u c t o r commented t h a t she teaches, d u r i n g t h i s hour,  i n response t o concerns and  needs which are expressed by  the  c o u n s e l l o r s - i n - t r a i n i n g , or i n response t o i s s u e s which may a r i s e n the p r e v i o u s  week.  From ten o ' c l o c k u n t i l t h r e e  the c o u n s e l l o r s work w i t h c l i e n t s . s u p e r v i s o r and  During t h i s time,  s u p e r v i s o r - i n - t r a i n i n g watch s e s s i o n s  have  o'clock,  the from the  v i e w i n g rooms ( t r a d i n g o f f so t h a t , i d e a l l y , each i s a b l e t o view a t l e a s t a p o r t i o n of each c o u n s e l l o r ' s s e s s i o n s ) . s e s s i o n s are a l s o v i d e o taped and counsellor-in-training  These  audio taped, so t h a t  (and the s u p e r v i s o r s ,  the  a t times) can  review  s p e c i f i c s e s s i o n s as p a r t of the t r a i n i n g / l e a r n i n g p r o c e s s . c o u n s e l l o r s are not booked t o work with c l i e n t s , they, observe s e s s i o n s observations  and/or suggestions,  which are l a t e r shared w i t h  I d e a l l y , feedback i s g i v e n by the s u p e r v i s o r and  time r e s t r a i n t s prevent t h i s .  and,  again,  i n the l a r g e meeting room and  feedback.  but,  often,  the team comes  focuses  on  feedback  c o u n s e l l o r concerns.  During our c o n v e r s a t i o n s t o o r i e n t me  At t h r e e o'clock,  the  supervisor-in-  t r a i n i n g immediately a f t e r the s e s s i o n i n q u e s t i o n ,  again,  too,  from the v i e w i n g rooms and make notes of t h e i r  working c o u n s e l l o r i n the form of w r i t t e n or v e r b a l  together  When  together,  I i n v i t e d each respondent  t o her c l i n i c g r o u p — i n p a r t i c u l a r , by t a l k i n g about  "whatever stands out  f o r you"  about the group, as w e l l as  by  49  d e s c r i b i n g her sense of her own  " r o l e " w i t h i n the group.  q u e s t i o n n i n g , i n t h i s area, was  p u r p o s e f u l l y vague (and I o f t e n  d e s c r i b e d i t t o the p a r t i c i p a n t s t h i s way) respondent  i n o r d e r t o a l l o w the  maximum freedom t o focus on what was  Thus I used p h r a s i n g l i k e :  My  important t o her.  "anything t h a t ' s r e a l l y important t o  you about the c l i n i c group" or, "What's the s o r t of t h i n g t h a t would come i n t o the foreground,  first,  about t h a t p a r t i c u l a r  group, f o r you?" or, "What stands out f o r you about the group?" or, "Whatever...your gut r e a c t i o n would be what's t h i s group l i k e f o r you?"  when I say,  I t i s p r i m a r i l y from  'Well, responses  t o q u e s t i o n s l i k e these t h a t the f o l l o w i n g d e s c r i p t i o n s of p a r t i c i p a n t s ' conceptions of the group i t s e l f were drawn. Three themes emerged from c o n v e r s a t i o n s w i t h p a r t i c i p a n t s :  group  c o h e s i v e n e s s ; the e f f e c t s of i n t r a - g r o u p d i f f e r e n c e s ;  and  s a f e t y / s u p p o r t w i t h i n the group. Conceptions w i t h i n these themes are p r e s e n t e d below. As noted above, c o n c e p t i o n s are not mutually e x c l u s i v e ; group members may  h o l d more than one,  sometimes even  c o n f l i c t i n g , c o n c e p t i o n around a p a r t i c u l a r theme.  Members' Conceptions  of Group  Cohesiveness  T h i s s e c t i o n d e s c r i b e s team members' c o n c e p t i o n s of group cohesiveness.  P a r t i c i p a n t s r e f e r r e d t o cohesiveness  t h e i r sense of i t s presence  or absence i n the group.  i n terms of Two  dichotomous c o n c e p t i o n s were r e v e a l e d : Conception  1: The Women's C l i n i c Team i s a c o h e s i v e group.  Conception  2: The Women's C l i n i c Team l a c k s group cohesiveness.  In h o l d i n g c o n c e p t i o n 1, women expressed t h e i r sense t h a t  50 the group was u n i t e d ; they experienced i t as a u n i t , a n d saw themselves  as p a r t o f t h a t .  These group members d e s c r i b e d a  f e e l i n g o f c l o s e n e s s between group members—a " b e l o n g i n g " which was o f t e n expressed working t o g e t h e r . f a m i l y t o me"  i n a sense o f common purpose o r ease i n D expressed,  (D-10).  " I t ' s l i k e a very  benevolent  H says, "We f e e l very, v e r y c l o s e , and we  f e e l we've bonded, o r t h a t t h e r e i s a mutual understanding and r e s p e c t f o r each o t h e r " (H-6). t h i s as,  E d e s c r i b e s h e r f e e l i n g s about  " I have r e a l l y l o v e d being i n t h i s c l i n i c because I do  l i k e t h a t f e e l i n g o f c o n n e c t i n g with o t h e r women i n a common theme...I mean t h e y ' r e t r y i n g t o do t h e same t h i n g "  (E-16).  Women who h e l d c o n c e p t i o n 2, saw t h e group as l a c k i n g i n cohesiveness and f e l t themselves from t h e r e s t o f t h e group.  somewhat d i s t a n c e d o r a l i e n a t e d  These p a r t i c i p a n t s d e s c r i b e t h e  group as a c o l l e c t i o n o f u n r e l a t e d i n d i v i d u a l s .  G comments,  " I t ' s funny, because I don't n e c e s s a r i l y see i t as a c l o s e - k n i t g r o u p . . . l i k e . . I see i t as people t h a t are o f f i n t h e i r own worlds"  (G-14).  little  F says, " I would say t h e stage t h a t i t ' s i n ,  r i g h t now i s b a s i c a l l y not one o f cohesiveness..but..rather...one o f i n d i v i d u a l s w i t h i n a group" (F-12).  Members' Conceptions The  o f t h e E f f e c t s o f Intra-Group D i f f e r e n c e s  second theme about t h e group which s u r f a c e d i n  c o n v e r s a t i o n s w i t h t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s concerned about t h e e f f e c t s o f i n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s  their  conceptions  w i t h i n t h e group.  T h i s theme i n v o l v e d an acknowledgement o f v a r i a t i o n w i t h i n the group and viewed t h a t as being e i t h e r complementary o r  51 contradictory.  D i f f e r e n c e s viewed as complementary were seen as  b e i n g a d d i t i v e t o group p r o c e s s ; those viewed as c o n t r a d i c t o r y were seen as d e t r a c t i n g .  Two c o n c e p t i o n s r e l a t e d t o t h i s theme:  Conception 1: I n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s w i t h i n t h e group a r e complementary. Conception 2: I n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s w i t h i n t h e group a r e contradictory. Each o f these c o n c e p t i o n s was focused on from two d i f f e r e n t perspectives: and  (a) d i f f e r e n c e s between t h e s u p e r v i s o r / i n s t r u c t o r  the doctoral supervisor-in-training or,  (b) d i f f e r e n c e s  between group members i n g e n e r a l . In h o l d i n g  conception l a , p a r t i c i p a n t s described  d i f f e r e n c e s between t h e s u p e r v i s o r / i n s t r u c t o r Doctoral  perceived  (S.) and t h e  s u p e r v i s o r - i n - t r a i n i n g (ST.) as b e i n g complementary and  b e n e f i c i a l t o t h e group as a whole. r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h S., says, theories..not  Thus, ST., i n d i s c u s s i n g her  "We come from d i f f e r e n t  (different) philosophy..in  t h a t we a r e both r e a l l y  v e r y c l i e n t - c e n t r e d . . . But I f o l l o w psychodynamic theory, and she's pure c l i e n t - c e n t r e d . But i t never got i n t h e way..it j u s t added" (C-4).  From S.'s p o i n t o f view:  We complement each o t h e r because o f our p e r s p e c t i v e s , so t h a t we're n e i t h e r one r e t r e a d s o f t h e other, you know..So the s t u d e n t s a r e a c t u a l l y . . i t s a d d i t i v e l e a r n i n g . . . n o t r e p e t i t i v e . . . I l e a r n from her, and she l e a r n s from me, and i t ' s fun! I t ' s r e a l l y fun b e i n g t h e r e . . i t ' s an aspect o f the work t h a t g i v e s me p l e a s u r e . (B-9) 1  Another group member, E, d e s c r i b e s  the r e l a t i o n s h i p between these  two: I have l e a r n e d a l o t from S. And not only have I l e a r n e d from S, but...I'm r e a l l y g l a d t h a t ST's been t h e r e . . t o o . S. tends t o be p e r v a s i v e i n h e r i n f l u e n c e . . . a n d ST. b r i n g s i n  52 s p e c i f i c t h i n g s which I r e a l l y a p p r e c i a t e . So, I t h i n k . . u h . . a c t u a l l y , the combination has been t e r r i f i c ! And they work t o g e t h e r w e l l . (E-12,13) The  group members h o l d i n g c o n c e p t i o n  l b focused on  d i f f e r e n c e s w i t h i n t h e group i n g e n e r a l , and saw those as being complementary o r a d d i t i v e .  G says:  I b e l i e v e t h a t we have t o work w i t h d i f f e r e n c e , and t h a t we have t o make a d i f f e r e n c e . . i n any s m a l l way we can. I t h i n k t h a t . . . l i k e I said..even i f they can p i c k something up from me..that they wouldn't n e c e s s a r i l y g e t from....and v i c e v e r s a . . t h a t I can p i c k something up from them and t h e way they see t h e world....We r e a l l students t o g e t h e r , l e a r n i n g d i f f e r e n t ways. (G-26) 1  The  student h o l d i n g c o n c e p t i o n  2a views t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p  between t h e s u p e r v i s o r s as being not complimentary. Her experience  o f t h e i r d i f f e r e n c e s i s t h a t i t impacts n e g a t i v e l y on  the group, r a t h e r than f a c i l i t a t i n g group o r i n d i v i d u a l l e a r n i n g . F  comments: At times, my own experience i s s e e i n g t h e i r e v a l u a t i o n s of my performance as being q u i t e d i f f e r e n t from one another...My sense i s t h a t she (ST) f e e l s she must b u f f e r what i n p u t she p r o v i d e s . . o r a t l e a s t p r o v i d e i t i n such a way t h a t i t i s n ' t g l a r i n g l y i n o p p o s i t i o n t o t h a t which has been p r o v i d e d by t h e s u p e r v i s o r . . S o o f t e n t i m e s . . I f e l t stuck i n t h e middle. (F-16) The  student h o l d i n g conception  2b views d i f f e r e n c e s i n  student p e r c e p t i o n s as being uncomplimentary and  nonproductive.  She s t a t e s : I r e a l i z e t h a t ' s something t h a t r e a l l y bothers me about the whole t h i n g . . I f e e l t h a t t h e r e ' s t h a t b i g d i f f e r e n c e and, I mean...you j u s t know when someone's on a d i f f e r e n t wavelength...And so..uh..the way I d e a l w i t h i t . . i s I j u s t don't g e t i n v o l v e d w i t h i t . (G-19)  53 Members' Conceptions o f t h e Group as a Safe Environment T h i s s e c t i o n d i s c u s s e s group members' e x p e r i e n c e o f t h e c l i n i c group as a s a f e environment. terms o f i t s presence or absence,  S a f e t y was d e s c r i b e d i n  i n these c o n c e p t i o n s .  The two  c o n c e p t i o n s , around t h i s theme, which emerged from t h e data were: Conception 1: The c l i n i c group i s a s a f e  environment.  Conception 2: The c l i n i c group i s an unsafe  environment.  In e x p r e s s i o n s o f c o n c e p t i o n 1, group members expressed s a f e , c o m f o r t a b l e , o r r e l a x e d w i t h i n t h e group.  feeling  In c o n c e p t i o n 2,  the e x p e r i e n c e expressed i s r e l a t e d t o f e e l i n g unsafe, a f r a i d or nervous.  W i t h i n each o f these c o n c e p t i o n s were found  different  l e v e l s of i n t e r p r e t a t i o n corresponding t o p a r t i c i p a n t s ' d i f f e r e n t p e r s p e c t i v e s on the same c o n c e p t i o n :  slightly  (a) t h e source of  s a f e t y o r l a c k o f s a f e t y i s seen i n t h e s u p e r v i s o r ( s ) , s a f e t y has i t s source i n the t o t a l group i t s e l f .  o r (b)  (There i s no  e x p r e s s i o n o f l a c k of s a f e t y w i t h i n t h e group h a v i n g i t s source i n t h e group i t s e l f . )  These two c o n c e p t i o n s , w i t h t h e i r  c o r r e s p o n d i n g l e v e l s , a r e an attempt t o p o r t r a y t h e range o f e x p e r i e n c e expressed by group members around t h e theme o f t h e group as a s a f e p l a c e , but cannot be seen as e x h a u s t i v e o f the p o s s i b l e range o f conceptions which c o u l d be c o n c e i v e d t o occupy the outcome space. Conception l a expresses a view o f t h e c l i n i c group as a s a f e environment  and sees t h a t s a f e t y as b e i n g p r o v i d e d o r f a c i l i t a t e d  by t h e s u p e r v i s o r ( s ) .  B says, "I t h i n k , i n g e n e r a l , they see i t  as a s a f e p l a c e t o grow.  They're w i l l i n g t o take r i s k s , and they  know they w i l l get feedback,  (from t h e s u p e r v i s o r s ) but they  54 won't g e t c l o b b e r e d "  (B-8).  Another group member comments:  The b e n e f i t s o f h e r s t y l e o f s u p e r v i s i o n q u i c k l y outweighed e v e r y t h i n g e l s e , because a l l o f a sudden you were i n a s a f e environment and t h e r e weren't any power games going on...and you c o u l d grow! And so..when I knew she was doing t h e c l i n i c t h i s y e a r . . t h a t ' s where I wanted t o be..cause I knew t h a t she would t r e a t me with such r e s p e c t t h a t I would be a b l e t o . . . s p r e a d my wings....and l e a r n . ( C - l ) Conception  l b i n v o l v e s an experience  p l a c e and l o c a t e s t h e source whole.  C expresses  o f t h i s s a f e t y w i t h i n t h e group as a  t h i s conception  always t h e hand on t h e s h o u l d e r . . o r hug...just  o f t h e group as a s a f e  i n s a y i n g , "But t h e r e was the squeeze, o r t h e  t o l e t you know t h a t t h e r e was an anchor t h e r e , and a  s a f e p l a c e t o come back t o " (C-12). Conception  2a focuses on t h e group as an unsafe p l a c e , and  t h i s e x p r e s s i o n o f the conception  l o c a t e s t h e r e s u l t i n g danger i n  the s u p e r v i s o r ' s c o n t r o l i n terms o f e v a l u a t i o n . who expressed  t h i s conception  The p a r t i c i p a n t  s a i d , "Because o f our p o s i t i o n s o f  b e i n g — w e a r e going t o be e v a l u a t e d — I . . p e r s o n a l l y . . a m speaking  f e a r f u l of  out t o o l o u d l y about what i s d i s a p p o i n t i n g t o me" (F-  14) .  2. Data c o l l e c t i o n For t h i s study, use o f :  technique data c o l l e c t i o n was accomplished through the  (a) a p r e - i n t e r v i e w q u e s t i o n n a i r e t o c o l l e c t demographic  and p e r s o n a l  information;  (b) a p o s t - i n t e r v i e w  questionnaire,  administered  s e v e r a l weeks a f t e r t h e main i n t e r v i e w s i n order t o  g i v e p a r t i c i p a n t s a v e h i c l e f o r feedback concerning experience  of the process;  and (c) through in-depth  i n t e r v i e w s w i t h each respondent.  their focused  S i n c e i n t e r v i e w s were t h e  55 primary  data c o l l e c t i o n technique  concentrate,  used i n t h i s study,  I will  i n what f o l l o w s , on d e s c r i b i n g , f i r s t , t h e  e p i s t e m o l o g i c a l foundations o f t h i s p o r t i o n o f t h e methodology and,  second, t h e a c t u a l i n t e r v i e w i n g p r o c e s s .  The hermeneutic encounter In Chapter I I we s i t u a t e d t h e r e s e a r c h technique study w i t h i n t h e q u a l i t a t i v e paradigm.  of t h i s  Quite obviously,  even  w i t h i n t h i s , t h e r e e x i s t d i f f e r e n t sources o f i n f o r m a t i o n through which we c o u l d come t o an understanding a s p e c t s o f t h e i r world.  o f people's  These i n c l u d e b e h a v i o u r a l  s t o r i e s , drawings o r other c r e a t i o n s o f respondents, and  interviews.  experience o f observation, case s t u d i e s  The i n t e r v i e w , however, i s acknowledged as t h e  primary method o f phenomenographic data c o l l e c t i o n  (Marton,  1986). For me, t h e movement from a t r a d i t i o n a l r e s e a r c h focus, p e r s p e c t i v e and technique  t o a reframed approach, i n seeking t o  answer my r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n , i s p e r s o n a l l y s i t u a t e d w i t h i n a commitment t o what M i s h l e r (1986) c a l l s "humane v a l u e s " and, particular,  in  i n my case, t o f e m i n i s t v a l u e s i n working with women.  Thus a standard approach t o i n t e r v i e w i n g would n e i t h e r f i t with the reframed r e s e a r c h paradigm d e s c r i b e d i n Chapter I I , nor with my own wish t o work with women i n a way t h a t v a l i d a t e s t h e i r experiences  and r e s p e c t s t h e i r r i g h t t o t e l l t h e i r own s t o r i e s .  Traditional  i n t e r v i e w techniques  i n psychology  the n a t u r a l s c i e n c e approach t o psychology,  a r e rooted i n  already discussed,  and t h e r e s u l t a n t search f o r c a u s a l e x p l a n a t i o n , p r e d i c t i o n and  56 control.  In t h i s t r a d i t i o n , the i n t e r v i e w as a  stimulus-response  s i t u a t i o n attempts t o s t a n d a r d i z e both the q u e s t i o n s  asked  and  the i n t e r v i e w e r ' s behaviour and a l s o i g n o r e s the respondent's p e r s o n a l c o n t e x t s of meaning ( M i s h l e r , 1986).  T h i s study,  o t h e r hand, approaches the i n t e r v i e w as d i s c o u r s e , c o n v e r s a t i o n between speakers, meanings of q u e s t i o n s  on  the  as  with an acknowledgement t h a t  "the  and responses are c o n t e x t u a l l y grounded  j o i n t l y c o n s t r u c t e d by i n t e r v i e w e r and respondent" ( I b i d , p. T h i s approach, which i s c o n s i s t e n t with hermeneutics,  and 34).  satisfies  the r e l a t i o n a l p e r s p e c t i v e of phenomenography, as w e l l as  the  s o c i a l / p o l i t i c a l p o s i t i o n of f e m i n i s t c r i t i c s of t r a d i t i o n a l methodology, who  see the attempt t o m a i n t a i n  objectivity,  detachment and the h i e r a r c h i c a l r e l a t i o n s h i p between i n t e r v i e w e r and  respondent as, not only an i m p o s s i b l e aim,  "morally  i n d e f e n s i b l e " (Oakley,  Palmer (1969), i n  1981  p.  but a l s o as  41).  g i v i n g words t o Gadamer's v i s i o n of  hermeneutics an an e x p l o r a t i o n of the nature catches the essence of the t a s k of the  of  understanding,  interviewer:  One i s not so much a knower as an e x p e r i e n c e r ; the encounter i s not a conceptual g r a s p i n g of something but an event i n which a world opens i t s e l f up t o one. I n s o f a r as each i n t e r p r e t e r stands i n a new h o r i z o n , the event t h a t comes t o language i n the hermeneutical experience i s something new t h a t emerges, something t h a t d i d not e x i s t b e f o r e . In t h i s event, grounded i n l i n g u i s t i c a l i t y and made p o s s i b l e by the d i a l e c t i c a l encounter with the meaning of the t r a n s m i t t e d t e x t , the hermeneutical experience f i n d s i t s f u l f i l l m e n t , (p. 209)  57 The  conversations The q u e s t i o n o f how women experience power i n t h e i r  r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h i n an all-woman work group was e x p l o r e d i n t e r v i e w as d i s c o u r s e — t h r o u g h what we might c a l l encounters  hermeneutic  o r speech events which acknowledged t h e mutual shaping  o f meaning.  I t seems a p p r o p r i a t e here t o speak o f these as  conversations.  F i v e o f these c o n v e r s a t i o n s were h e l d i n my home  and t h r e e i n t h e respondents was based  through  1  homes; t h e s e t t i n g , i n each case,  on what seemed, t o t h e respondent,  most convenient and  comfortable f o r her. The b e g i n n i n g o f our time t o g e t h e r , although i t v a r i e d w i t h i n d i v i d u a l p a r t i c i p a n t s u s u a l l y i n v o l v e d some s h a r i n g o f hospitality  ( o f t e n a cup o f t e a o r c o f f e e ) and i n f o r m a l d i a l o g u e .  T h i s o c c u r r e d i n an easy, n a t u r a l way, and allowed us t o e a s i l y e s t a b l i s h a comfortable c o n n e c t i o n t o g e t h e r as w e l l as some consensus around t h e context o f our meeting.  During t h i s  time,  we d i s c u s s e d i s s u e s around c o n f i d e n t i a l i t y , I answered q u e s t i o n s or addressed  concerns t h a t i n d i v i d u a l s expressed,  t o P a r t i c i p a t e " form was completed  and a "Consent  (see Appendix A ) .  I also  s t a t e d my i n t e r e s t i n understanding how they, as i n d i v i d u a l s , experienced power, and assured them t h a t I was n o t i n t e r e s t e d i n any p a r t i c u l a r " d e f i n i t i o n " o f power. P a r t i c i p a n t s knew t h a t I shared w i t h them t h e experience o f b e i n g a graduate  student, and a c o u n s e l l o r - i n - t r a i n i n g who had  a l s o p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h e Women's C l i n i c Team ( a l b e i t s e v e r a l y e a r s p r i o r t o t h e i r own e x p e r i e n c e ) .  They a l s o knew t h a t we  shared t h e experience o f b e i n g f e m i n i s t women i n t h e world, which  58 i m p l i e s a common language. whatever degree, person/world  T h i s awareness o f s h a r i n g , t o  a common language ( r e f l e c t i v e o f a common  r e l a t i o n s h i p ) c r e a t e d a sense o f ease and t r u s t  which f a c i l i t a t e d our c o n v e r s a t i o n s t o g e t h e r .  I was a l s o aware  t h a t i t c o u l d seduce me i n t o b e l i e v i n g t h a t I "knew" what these women meant r a t h e r than r i s k i n g an a t t i t u d e o f not-knowing and engaging  myself openly i n t h e d i a l e c t i c a l p r o c e s s o f  understanding myself  i n a way which would i n v i t e t r a n s f o r m a t i o n i n  (Palmer,  1969; T i t e l m a n , 1979).  One way t h a t I d e a l t  w i t h t h i s was t o inform t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s t h a t I would take, a t times, t h e stance o f "not understanding,"  i n our c o n v e r s a t i o n s ,  and ask f o r c o n c r e t e examples and c l a r i f i c a t i o n so t h a t I might guard a g a i n s t assuming knowledge and work towards t r u l y her p e r s o n a l experience.  D i s c u s s i n g t h i s openly w i t h t h e  p a r t i c i p a n t was a l s o important cicumvented  revealing  i n t h a t i t a n t i c i p a t e d and  t h e p o s s i b i l i t y o f i r r i t a t i o n o r weakened t r u s t which  may have r e s u l t e d from repeated q u e s t i o n n i n g o f t h e "obvious" which, without e x p l a n a t i o n , may have l e f t h e r f e e l i n g t r u l y "not understood." T h i s d e c i s i o n t o d i s c u s s w i t h t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s my d e s i r e t o t r u l y understand  t h e i r experience, as opposed t o assuming t h a t my  understanding was t h e i r s o r attempting t o " f i t "  their  conceptions  i n t o an a l r e a d y - e x i s t i n g s t r u c t u r e , came out o f feedback e a r l i e r p i l o t interviews.  These were a l s o important  from two  i n t h a t they  p r o v i d e d an o p p o r t u n i t y f o r me t o gauge t h e " r i c h n e s s " o f data which I might expect, i n r e l a t i o n t o i n t e r v i e w  time-frames;  allowed me " p r a c t i c e " i n a c t u a l l y b r i n g i n g my own experience  into  59  c o n t a c t w i t h o t h e r women's l i v e d experiences o f power; and gave me a sense, n o t o n l y o f t h e r e l e v a n c e o f my q u e s t i o n n i n g , but a l s o o f d i f f e r e n t "paths" t o meaning which may o r may not be facilitative  to a particular individual.  These  pilot  c o n v e r s a t i o n s n u r t u r e d , i n me, a g r e a t e r awareness o f t h e process of  i n t e r v i e w as d i a l o g u e — a s hermeneutic The  encounter.  " f o r m a l " p o r t i o n o f each c o n v e r s a t i o n began w i t h t h e  q u e s t i o n , "Could you t e l l me about how you g o t y o u r s e l f i n t o  this  p a r t i c u l a r c l i n i c group (as opposed t o some o t h e r c l i n i c ) ? "  This  i n i t i a l p a r t o f t h e i n t e r v i e w continued by f o c u s i n g  on t h e  p a r t i c i p a n t ' s view o f h e r c l i n i c group and h e r sense o f h e r r e l a t i o n s w i t h / w i t h i n t h a t group. branched  Although each c o n v e r s a t i o n  o f f on i t s own unique way, t h e t e r r i t o r y e x p l o r e d was  common and i n c l u d e d : -the s i g n i f i c a n c e , f o r t h e p a r t i c i p a n t , o f b e i n g i n v o l v e d i n Women's  Clinic.  -when t h i s i n v o l v e d a commitment t o work p r i m a r i l y w i t h women, i n t h e world, t h e b a s i s o f t h i s commitment was explored. -whatever stood out, f o r t h e p a r t i c i p a n t , about t h e group. -experience o f f i t t i n g  i n , belonging,  role.  D i s c u s s i o n o f these i s s u e s o r i e n t e d me, as an o u t s i d e r , t o t h e p a r t i c i p a n t ' s experience o f t h e group as a whole, and h e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h i n / t o t h a t group. c o n t e x t u a l l y grounding  I t a l s o served as a way o f  the basic question of the i n d i v i d u a l ' s  c o n c e p t i o n s o f power w i t h i n t h e group. When t h e d i s c u s s i o n o f t h e group as c o n t e x t f e l t  complete,  60  we moved i n t o an e x p l o r a t i o n o f t h e p a r t i c i p a n t ' s e x p e r i e n c e o f power w i t h i n t h e group.  In each case, I began t h i s p r o c e s s by  a s k i n g t h e p a r t i c i p a n t t o focus on t h e group and t o t h i n k o f a time when something happened t h a t , a t t h e time, o r i n r e t r o s p e c t , she r e c o g n i z e d  as i n v o l v i n g t h e o p e r a t i o n  o f power.  "It's like  something happened, and you're t e l l i n g me the s t o r y o f t h a t .  And  the s t o r y i s about one person o r more than one person i n your group, and power." recountings  Each c o n v e r s a t i o n  included  several  o f such experience, and each r e c o u n t i n g  involved  d i s c u s s i o n of the following issues: - d e s c r i p t i o n o f power as the p a r t i c i p a n t saw i t o p e r a t i n g i n that  instance.  -source o f power. - e f f e c t o f power (on t h e i n d i d i v i d u a l ; on o t h e r s ; on t h e group). I made t h e d e c i s i o n t o approach power i n t h i s way i n an attempt t o make t h e q u e s t i o n n i n g possible.  Obviously  around t h i s i s s u e as open-ended as  the s p e c i f i c f o c u s i n g  source o f t h a t power?") r e p r e s e n t s ,  (ex. "What was t h e  t o some degree, my own p r e -  u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f power o r , a t l e a s t , o f p o s s i b l e aspects  (or p e r s p e c t i v e s )  o f power.  significant  While acknowledging t h i s ,  however, I wanted t o leave as much room as p o s s i b l e f o r t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s ' unique experiences and c o n c e p t i o n s t o emerge. use t h e map analogy again,  I saw our t a s k t o g e t h e r  To  being t h e  e x p l o r a t i o n o f t h e t e r r a i n o f power and my r o l e t h a t o f keeping us on t h e map.  Within  t h a t , however, I wanted t h e p a r t i c i p a n t t o  f e e l f r e e t o choose the paths, and areas t h a t were p e r t i n e n t t o  61 her. I concluded t h e d i s c u s s i o n o f each i n s t a n c e by i n v i t i n g the p a r t i c i p a n t t o g i v e t h e p a r t i c u l a r s t o r y she had j u s t recounted a moral.  A f t e r we had e x p l o r e d s e v e r a l i n s t a n c e s o f power  o p e r a t i n g i n t h e group, I asked h e r t o share any i d e a s ( o v e r a r c h i n g p r i n c i p l e s , g e n e r a l i z a t i o n s ) t h a t she might take from h e r experience w i t h power, here, t o o t h e r s i t u a t i o n s where she would be working w i t h women.  I a l s o asked h e r t o b r a i n s t o r m  synonyms and antonyms f o r power (See Appendix  E).  Each i n t e r v i e w was concluded by i n v i t i n g t h e p a r t i c i p a n t t o comment, express concerns, o r ask q u e s t i o n s t h a t she might have.  still  Informal endings t y p i c a l l y i n v o l v e d some b r i e f d i s c u s s i o n  of common i n t e r e s t s — g e n e r a l l y around work ( c o u n s e l l i n g ) o r academic i s s u e s . As might be expected  i n c o n v e r s a t i o n s around  phenomena, t h e r e was a tendency  social  f o r i n d i v i d u a l s t o speak i n  a b s t r a c t and g e n e r a l i z e d terms, o r t o assume t h a t we d i d n ' t have t o a r t i c u l a t e c e r t a i n i s s u e s because we both "understood"  those.  My t a s k , as q u e s t i o n n e r , was t o focus t h e d i r e c t i o n a l i t y o f c o n v e r s a t i o n s , and t o move the d i a l o g u e from g e n e r a l i z a t i o n t o specificity.  I found t h a t my t r a i n i n g , as a c o u n s e l l o r , i n  a c t i v e l i s t e n i n g was i n v a l u a b l e i n t h a t I had, a l r e a d y a t hand, the s k i l l s w i t h which t o focus and deepen the p a r t i c i p a n t ' s d e s c r i p t i o n s o f h e r experience. The c o n v e r s a t i o n s were tape recorded and l a t e r t r a n s c r i b e d in their entirety.  Raw data were thus f u l l y recorded and  a r c h i v e d and a r e a v a i l a b l e f o r c r e d i b i l i t y checks.  Although  this  62 approach may seem "common-sense", i t i s o f t e n omitted  i n standard  interview research p r a c t i c e . S e l e c t i o n s from t r a n s c r i p t s , quoted i n t h e next t e s t i f y t o t h e openness o f these c o n v e r s a t i o n s .  chapter,  The women  i n v o l v e d r i s k e d r e v e a l i n g t h e i r p e r s o n a l w o r l d s — s o m e t i m e s , even as they s t r u g g l e d t o d i s c o v e r these through a r t i c u l a t i o n o f t h e i r experience.  My own sense o f t h e i n t e r v i e w s i s t h a t o f  harmoniousness and a shared rhythm throughout each of two people e n j o y i n g t h e i r shared  conversation,  dialogue.  I was a l s o aware o f power i s s u e s which might operate w i t h i n the i n t e r v i e w s themselves. informed by  In o p t i n g f o r i n t e r v i e w i n g  techniques  a l t e r n a t e p e r s p e c t i v e s , I chose, i n M i s h l e r ' s  (1986)  words t o : s h i f t a t t e n t i o n away from t h e i n v e s t i g a t o r s 'problems, such as t e c h n i c a l i s s u e s o f r e l i a b i l i t y and v a l i d i t y , t o respondents' problems, s p e c i f i c a l l y , t h e i r e f f o r t s t o c o n s t r u c t coherent and reasonable worlds o f meaning and t o make sense o f t h e i r e x p e r i e n c e s . . . t o f i n d ways t o empower respondents so t h a t they have more c o n t r o l o f t h e processes through which t h e i r words a r e g i v e n meaning...and t o encourage them t o f i n d and speak i n t h e i r own v o i c e s , (p.118) 1  One  1  way t h a t I checked t h e e f f e c t s o f my e f f o r t s i n t h i s  d i r e c t i o n was through t h e Post-Interview Appendix C), which respondents f i l l e d  Q u e s t i o n n a i r e (see  i n and r e t u r n e d  anonymously, s e v e r a l weeks a f t e r t h e i n t e r v i e w . opportunity  t o me,  T h i s was an  f o r t h e women, a f t e r some time f o r c o n s i d e r a t i o n , t o  comment again on t h e process  and i t s e f f e c t s on them.  What  f o l l o w s a r e r e p r e s e n t a t i v e comments: I found i t e x c i t i n g t o d i s c u s s my experiences o f how I c o n c e p t u a l i z e power with you. I had never been asked such a q u e s t i o n b e f o r e nor had such an u n i n t e r r u p t e d o p p o r t u n i t y t o e x p l o r e my thoughts and f e e l i n g s about t h i s s u b j e c t . As a  63  r e s u l t of my d i s c u s s i o n w i t h you, even as I was t a l k i n g w i t h you, I came t o understand more o f what I a c t u a l l y b e l i e v e about power among and between women, and how i t o p e r a t e s . I t seemed t h a t the more I had the o p p o r t u n i t y t o d i s c u s s t h e s e i s s u e s w i t h you, the more i t l e d from one i d e a t o another. I am v e r y g l a d t o have had t h i s opportunity....how easy you made i t t o t a l k about power. I t was a t o t a l d e l i g h t f o r me t o d i s c u s s my e x p e r i e n c e s w i t h you. I t s t i m u l a t e d my t h i n k i n g about women and p o w e r — l o o k i n g f u r t h e r f o r d e f i n i t i o n s and f o r my p e r s o n a l view of power. I shared some of these thoughts w i t h members of my group. I was comfortable d i s c u s s i n g my e x p e r i e n c e s w i t h you, even though, i n i t i a l l y , I wasn't sure where our d i s c u s s i o n would l e a d me t o . Things s t a r t e d t o f a l l i n t o p l a c e f o r me as we were t a l k i n g — i . e . power, and v a l i d a t i o n from peers, and how powerful t h a t i s i n v a l i d a t i n g us as i n d i v i d u a l s , and what t h a t does t o our sense of s e l f worth. I was v e r y comfortable d i s c l o s i n g t o y o u — f e l t the atmosphere t o be n o n - e v a l u a t i v e . P e r s o n a l l y , i t was empowering t o be a b l e t o t a l k about my own p h i l o s o p h y of power. The experience of p u t t i n g i d e a s i n t o words s o l i d i f i e d much o f my t h i n k i n g . Your q u e s t i o n s r a i s e d a number of concerns i n m e — h e i g h t e n e d my awareness. The experience was i l l u m i n a t i n g . Our c o n v e r s a t i o n had a g r e a t impact on me, even as I was d i s c u s s i n g these i s s u e s with you. I processed my experience f o r s e v e r a l days a f t e r and s t i l l r e f e r back t o i t o f t e n . The o p p o r t u n i t y t o c l a r i f y some aspects of t h i s concept and t o open up t o o t h e r ways of l o o k i n g a t power was v e r y stimulating. I would see i t as a c o n s c i o u s n e s s - r a i s i n g e x p e r i e n c e . P e r s o n a l l y , I was e n e r g i z e d by the i n t e r v i e w as I heard myself v o i c e some b e l i e f s about myself t h a t were, up u n t i l then, more vague. The experience made me f e e l more c o m f o r t a b l e w i t h myself i n some ways. I would recommend the e x p e r i e n c e as a v a l i d a t i n g e x p e r i e n c e ; i t h e l p s t o generate new i d e a s , new ways of l o o k i n g a t y o u r s e l f , and a l s o f o r c e s you t o put a b s t r a c t f e e l i n g s i n t o words, which then a l l o w s you t o a c t or t h i n k d i f f e r e n t l y about them. G e n e r a l l y , t h i s experience heightened my awareness o f power i n groups o f women, and I am g l a d of the experience f o r t h i s reason alone.  64 T h i s would be a wonderful way o f b e g i n n i n g a women's a d i s c u s s i o n , l i k e t h i s , o f power. In t h e hermeneutic calls  encounter,  group—  o r i n what M i s h l e r (1986)  " i n t e r v i e w i n g as a form o f d i s c o u r s e between speakers"  (p.7), language  i s a t t h e v e r y h e a r t o f e x p r e s s i o n and  understanding.  Thus t h e r e i s o f t e n a coming t o know, o r b r i n g i n g  to  c o n s c i o u s n e s s , through w o r d s — t h r o u g h speaking and l i s t e n i n g —  f o r both t h e i n t e r v i e w e r and t h e respondent.  F o r t h e respondent,  t h i s p r o c e s s sometimes i n v o l v e s moving from unawareness t o awareness. of  T h i s b r i n g i n g t o consciousness through t h e e x p r e s s i o n  one's person/world  r e l a t i o n s h i p can happen through  immediate  e x p r e s s i o n , o r through r e f l e c t i o n a f t e r t h e c o n v e r s a t i o n s and was w e l l expressed i n some o f t h e q u o t a t i o n s above. g a i n i n g i n s i g h t o r c o n s c i o u s knowing was f e l t  The process o f  i n some i n s t a n c e s ,  as " e n e r g i z i n g " o r " v a l i d a t i n g , " and i n o t h e r s as " d i s t u r b i n g . " One woman, f o r example, commented: I was not aware o f how uncomfortable I am w i t h t h e word "power" s i n c e I see power abused so much i n c l i e n t s ' l i v e s and i n r e l a t i o n s h i p s , i n c l u d i n g my own....I a l s o f e l t c h a g r i n e d , t o some extent, about t a l k i n g about t h e l e v e l s o f "powerfulness" which I had d e s c r i b e d i n t h e group, i . e . t h a t I had seen some members as more powerful than o t h e r s . . . I see myself as a woman b e i n g connected t o o t h e r women i n a nonc o m p e t i t i v e , c o o p e r a t i v e way, and then f i n d i n g myself t h i n k i n g i n terms o f h i e r a r c h i e s was d i s t u r b i n g . . . I w i l l now be aware o f t h i s and e x p l o r e these concepts as I become i n v o l v e d w i t h women•s groups more and more. At another p o i n t i n h e r P o s t - I n t e r v i e w Q u e s t i o n n a i r e , t h i s same participant  said:  I found t h a t i t c h a l l e n g e d my i d e a s about power i n groups o f women, i . e . t h a t I d i d not t h i n k t h a t t h e r e was such a t h i n g (as power i n women's groups)...so when I found myself t h i n k i n g e x a c t l y t h i s way, i t was d i s t u r b i n g , but u s e f u l t o me. I w i l l now be aware o f t h i s and e x p l o r e these concepts as I become i n v o l v e d w i t h women's groups more and more. T h i s  65  i s o f s p e c i a l s i g n i f i c a n c e t o me, s i n c e my r e s e a r c h w i l l be done i n a woman's group. In attempting t o come t o t h i s p r o c e s s w i t h r e s p e c t f o r t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s and an honest wish t o empower them through meeting, i t was important  our  f o r me t o be s e n s i t i v e t o what I d i d  w i t h both p r o c e s s and content.  The P o s t - I n t e r v i e w Q u e s t i o n n a i r e ,  from which t h e above quotes were taken, p r o v i d e d feedback  about  p a r t i c i p a n t s ' experience o f t h e p r o c e s s . In terms o f content, whenever p o s s i b l e , I shared w i t h each woman how I " i n t e r p r e t e d " and how I planned t o use h e r v o i c e d e x p e r i e n c e . However, t h e r e a c t i o n s o f one p a r t i c i p a n t a r e d i f f e r e n t the o t h e r s • r e a c t i o n s and deserve some comment.  from  During t h e  i n t e r v i e w , F, l i k e t h e o t h e r s , immersed h e r s e l f deeply i n t h e c o n v e r s a t i o n . Afterwards, little  r e f l e c t i n g on t h e experience, she was a  s u r p r i s e d and f r i g h t e n e d a t t h e e x t e n t t o which she f e l t  she had r e v e a l e d h e r e x p e r i e n c e s . concerns  T h i s , f o r her,  triggered  about c o n f i d e n t i a l i t y and a " p e r s o n a l f e a r o f  r e p e r c u s s i o n s " as w e l l as some concern about t h e " a c t u a l  purpose"  of t h e study. Although these i s s u e s had been d e a l t w i t h i n our i n i t i a l meeting and a l s o a t t h e time o f our i n t e r v i e w , we d i s c u s s e d them again, and I attempted  t o assure h e r t h a t my  r e s e a r c h aims were, indeed, what I had s t a t e d them t o be, and t h a t I would t r e a t h e r d i s c l o s u r e s w i t h r e s p e c t and s e n s i t i v i t y . I a l s o r e i t e r a t e d h e r e n t i t l e m e n t t o v e t o t h e use o f any m a t e r i a l p r o v i d e d by her, i n e i t h e r paraphrased  o r v e r b a t i m form.  As i t  t u r n e d out, when F was a b l e t o read t h e p o r t i o n s o f h e r t r a n s c r i p t which I chose t o i n c l u d e i n my work, she saw i t not  66  o n l y as a c c u r a t e i n terms of her c o n c e p t i o n s , but a l s o as i n terms of p r o t e c t i n g her from i d e n t i f i c a t i o n . t r a n s c r i p t , t h i s woman was l i f e which i t r e p r e s e n t e d difficult  of  In r e a d i n g  her  a b l e t o r e f l e c t upon the p e r i o d o f her f o r h e r — o n e t h a t she saw  as "a v e r y  time," but which, i n p e r s p e c t i v e , no l o n g e r seemed  threatening. for  "safe"  In coming t o terms with t h i s ,  her t o l e t go of f e a r s she had  i t a l s o seemed easy  f e l t around the v u l n e r a b i l i t y  e x p r e s s i n g h e r s e l f d u r i n g the i n i t i a l i n t e r v i e w . T h i s i n c i d e n t i l l u s t r a t e s i n t e r v i e w as d i s c o u r s e on s e v e r a l  l e v e l s . F experienced i s s u e s , which was, she had  a coming t o awareness, on a number o f  i n her case, p a i n f u l i n some ways and which  seen as p o s i n g a g r e a t r i s k t o her.  Her concern  about  t h i s i s a l s o a reminder t h a t our reframed i n t e r v i e w approach has to  do w i t h people,  not w i t h " o b j e c t s " (or " s u b j e c t s " ) who  could  be used f o r r e s e a r c h purposes and d i s r e g a r d e d i n terms of t h e i r own  needs.  A c c o r d i n g l y , F*s concerns were taken s e r i o u s l y ,  and  i f a f t e r r e a d i n g the f i n i s h e d " s c r i p t " she had  felt  threatened,  the t e x t would have been changed a c c o r d i n g l y .  In a study of t h i s  nature, the p a r t i c i p a n t ' s needs r e a l l y must come f i r s t , r e s e a r c h aims cannot be seen as more important r e s e c t f o r the p a r t i c i p a n t s i n v o l v e d .  than an a u t h e n t i c  At our p o s t - i n t e r v i e w  meeting I d e s c r i b e d the data a n a l y s i s process t o her; the outcome space; d e t a i l e d , theme by theme, how i n f l u e n c e d and  f i t i n t o i t ; and  c o r e meanings and her i n t e n t .  explained  her i n p u t had  i n v i t e d her t o b r i n g t o  a t t e n t i o n , any d i s c r e p e n c i e s between my  and  my  i n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f her  T h i s meeting a l s o served as  o p p o r t u n i t y f o r her t o ask f u r t h e r q u e s t i o n s , now  t h a t the  an  67 r e s e a r c h t a s k was  virtually  C.  "Taking speech  complete.  Data A n a l y s i s  seriously"  ( M i s h l e r , 1986,  p. 47)  is a  c o r n e r s t o n e o f methodology h e r e — p h i l o s o p h i c a l l y , and i n terms of technique.  I t begins, as d i s c u s s e d above,  i n t e r v i e w as  w i t h approaching  j o i n t l y - c o n s t r u c t e d d i a l o g u e , and c o n t i n u e s w i t h  what Marton (1989) d e s c r i b e s as the i n t e r p r e t a t i v e , hermeneutic, importance  the  a n a l y s i s of data.  Titelman  or  (1979) c a p t u r e s the  of t h i s focus i n commenting t h a t , " i n s o f a r as  (we)  seek t o e l u c i d a t e the meaning of experience and behaviour as i t i s l i v e d i n the everyday world, language as d i s c o u r s e . . . i s the field  i n which s i g n i f i c a t i o n emerges" (p. 182). In  the i n t e r e s t s , then, both of " t a k i n g language s e r i o u s l y , "  and of c r e a t i n g some r e l i a b i l i t y  i n the study, i n the sense  of  l e a v i n g a r e c o r d of "process" and f i x i n g data so t h a t i t c o u l d be examined and re-examined i n a s t a b i l i z e d form, over time, I taped each i n t e r v i e w , and then, as the f i r s t step of a n a l y s i s , t r a n s c r i b e d each i n i t s e n t i r e t y .  T h i s c o u l d be seen as  one  a s p e c t o f d e s i g n i n g f o r c o n s i s t e n c y by what Guba (1981) c a l l s e s t a b l i s h i n g an " a u d i t t r a i t . " researcher, i n t r a n s c r i b i n g ,  M i s h l e r (1986) c a u t i o n s the  "to pay c l o s e a t t e n t i o n t o  l i n g u i s t i c and p a r a l i n g u i s t i c f e a t u r e s t h a t appear i n n a t u r a l l y o c c u r r i n g t a l k but are r o u t i n e l y omitted from standard w r i t t e n texts"  (p.47).  A c c o r d i n g l y , i n t r a n s c r i b i n g my  w i t h respondents,  conversations  I have i n c l u d e d , i n the t r a n s c r i p t s , d e t a i l s of  68  speech such as pauses,  n o n l e x i c a l e x p r e s s i o n s , l a u g h t e r , obvious  changes i n p i t c h o r volume, s t r e s s e d words o r phrases, and speaker i n t e r r u p t i o n s o r o v e r l a p s (see Appendix D f o r T y p e s c r i p t N o t a t i o n System). saw  Although t h i s procedure was time-consuming, I  i t as p a r t o f t h e necessary t a s k o f c r e a t i n g t h e c o n d i t i o n s  f o r v a l i d a n a l y s i s and i n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f t h e i n t e r v i e w d a t a . T h i s p r o c e s s had t h e added advantage o f r e q u i r i n g me t o immerse myself i n t h e d a t a ; through c a r e f u l l i s t e n i n g and r e - l i s t e n i n g d u r i n g t h e t r a n s c r i p t i o n p r o c e s s , I began t o become f a m i l i a r with the worlds o f my respondents, conversations.  as they had expressed them i n these  In a d d i t i o n , t h i s c a r e i n t r a n s c r i p t i o n has  r e s u l t e d i n data t e x t s which r e f l e c t some tone o r q u a l i t y o f the i n d i v i d u a l ( s ) i n d i a l o g u e ; t h e r e i s much more o f a "human" q u a l i t y here than i n a standard i n t e r v i e w t r a n s c r i p t .  The  repeated l i s t e n i n g s t o the i n t e r v i e w s , necessary i n t h i s type o f t r a n s c r i p t i o n p r o c e s s , a l s o r e s u l t e d i n c o n s t a n t r e v i s i o n s i n the t r a n s c r i p t s , some o f which l e d t o s i g n i f i c a n t changes i n meaning. As w i t h o t h e r a s p e c t s o f t h e r e s e a r c h p r o c e s s , t h e r e e x i s t s some q u e s t i o n about when t h e t a s k i s completed.  F o r me, a sense o f  "completion f o r now" arose out o f t h r e e c o n s i d e r a t i o n s :  first, a  judgment on my p a r t t h a t I had achieved a l e v e l o f d e t a i l equal t o t h e demands o f my study aims; second,  a knowledge t h a t my data  a n a l y s i s technique would move me back and f o r t h between t r a n s c r i p t i o n s and taped c o v e r s a t i o n s and thus a l l o w ongoing checks,  i n t h i s r e g a r d ; and t h i r d , p r a c t i c a l c o n s i d e r a t i o n s  i n v o l v i n g time and energy  constraints.  A phenomenographic approach  t o data a n a l y s i s , l i k e the  69 i n t e r v i e w procedure process.  "The  itself,  i s consistent with  a n a l y s i s has t o be of an i t e r a t i v e and  i n t e r p r e t a t i v e nature, guided by what we may hermeneutics press,).  hermeneutic  call  genuinely  "the  of phenomenography" (Beaty, D a l l ' A l b a & Marton, i n  I t i n v o l v e d , as mentionned above, a c o n s t a n t movement,  back and f o r t h , between the audiotaped and t r a n s c r i b e d v e r s i o n s of  the data i n o r d e r t o assess the adequacy of t r a n s c r i p t i o n  and  then of i n t e r p r e t a t i o n ; i t i n v o l v e d , too, movement "between the data and emergent c a t e g o r i e s of meaning, which u l t i m a t e l y r e s u l t e d i n conceptions"  ( P r a t t , 1990,  p. 6 ) — i n t h i s  case,  conceptions of power. The  second  step of data a n a l y s i s here i n v o l v e d r e v i e w i n g  t r a n s c r i p t s and tapes i n order t o determine In  " u n i t s of meaning."  t h i s study, u n i t s of meaning r e f e r s t o quoted  r e p r e s e n t s some aspect of the respondents*  t e x t which  understanding  of the  phenomenon of power, as they experienced i t o p e r a t i n g i n t h e i r group c o n t e x t .  For the most p a r t , these u n i t s of meaning were  c o n t e x t u a l l y grounded, i n t h a t my  i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s around t h e i r  meaning were made i n r e l a t i o n s h i p t o t h e i r p l a c e i n the t o t a l conversation. McLardy (1990),  F o l l o w i n g the example of C a r r i e r e , MacKey and I found i t u s e f u l t o " t a g " these u n i t s of  meaning, as I p u l l e d them out of the t e x t , by n o t i n g the aspect of  power addressed by t h a t u n i t .  T h i s l e v e l of a n a l y s i s i n v o l v e d  a t t e n t i o n t o both r e f e r e n t i a l and s t r u c t u r a l a s p e c t s o f meaning (Beaty e t a l , i n press) which correspond t o Theman's (1983) noematic and n o e t i c aspects of meaning.  R e f e r e n t i a l or noematic  aspects of meaning r e f e r t o the g l o b a l meaning of the  concept—  70  the "what" o f an i n d i v i d u a l ' s understanding.  In t h i s case, t h e  e i g h t i n t e r v i e w s y i e l d e d a t o t a l o f 241 u n i t s o f meaning which articulated referential  (or noematic) a s p e c t s o f c o n c e p t i o n s .  The s t r u c t u r a l o r n o e t i c aspects r e f e r t o t h e "how" and "why" p a r t s o f u n d e r s t a n d i n g — t h e  perspective or figure/ground  focus o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l ' s understanding.  In t o t a l ,  meaning embodied o n l y s t r u c t u r a l aspects o f meaning  152 u n i t s o f ( i n some  cases, s t r u c t u r a l aspects o f meaning were a l s o i n c l u d e d i n the u n i t s tagged as r e f e r e n t i a l ) . The s t r u c t u r a l / n o e t i c and referential/noematic aspects of a conception are d i a l e c t i c a l l y r e l a t e d and can o n l y be separated t h e o r e t i c a l l y ; i n r e a l i t y cannot be understood anomalies  a p a r t from one another.  they  One o f t h e  o f r e s e a r c h i n g conceptions o f a complex s o c i a l  phenomenon such as power a r i s e s out o f t h i s i n t e r w i n i n g o f s t r u c t u r a l / r e f e r e n t i a l aspects o f the c o n c e p t i o n . appeared  t o be a c l e a r statement  of r e f e r e n t i a l  A t times, what  meaning—ex.  "Power i s having r e s p e c t , " — t u r n e d out, a f t e r i n v e s t i g a t i o n , t o be a statement phenomenon.  o f one o f t h e s t r u c t u r a l a s p e c t s o f t h e  In r e f e r e n c e t o the whole t r a n s c r i p t ,  the example j u s t quoted  f o r example,  r e f e r r e d t o the n o e t i c o r s t r u c t u r a l  aspect o f source o f power, w h i l e the respondent r e f e r e n t i a l aspect as " i n f l u e n c e " .  a c t u a l l y saw the  Thus t h e same d e s c r i p t i o n o f  power c o u l d , a t d i f f e r e n t times, r e f e r t o e i t h e r s t r u c t u r a l / n o e t i c o r r e f e r e n t i a l / n o e m a t i c a s p e c t s o f power. Because o f t h e complexity i n h e r e n t here, as p a r t o f t h i s l e v e l of a n a l y s i s , u n i t s o f meaning were checked  with the p a r t i c i p a n t ,  when necessary, t o ensure t h a t I had not misunderstood  her words.  71 The t h i r d l e v e l of a n a l y s i s i n v o l v e d p o o l i n g the u n i t s of meaning.  A t t h i s stage, the u n i t s of meaning were  d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d from the a c t u a l speech events of which they were a p a r t , and from t h e i r speakers, and my  i n t e r e s t s h i f t e d t o the  meanings embedded i n the quotes themselves.  "The  boundaries  between i n d i v i d u a l s were thus abandoned and i n t e r e s t was on the "pool of meanings" ((Marton & S a l j o , 1984, s t e p was may  accomplished  w i t h the p r i o r assumption  focused  p.39).  This  that individuals  h o l d v a r y i n g , even c o n f l i c t i n g , conceptions of the same  phenomenon, and the emphasis was understanding  expressed  on f i n d i n g a l l the v a r i a t i o n s of  f o r each concept.  At t h i s p o i n t , the  focus t u r n e d t o d i s c o v e r i n g a p a t t e r n o f s i m i l a r i t i e s  and  d i f f e r e n c e s i n meaning, and making a d e c i s i o n about the  specific  l e v e l a t which the quotes should be seen i n r e l a t i o n t o  one  another.  At times, even d u r i n g the p a r t o f the p r o c e s s , I found  i t necessary t o r e t u r n t o the t r a n s c r i p t s t o ensure the o f my  understanding o f a p a r t i c u l a r u n i t of meaning.  r e s u l t o f the p r o c e s s here was  accuracy  The  end  the d i s c o v e r y of a s e t of s i x  d i s t i n c t c a t e g o r i e s of meaning, d e p i c t i n g the q u a l i t a t i v e l y d i f f e r e n t ways i n which the p a r t i c i p a n t s i n t h i s study  understood  the phenomenon of power, as they experienced i t s o p e r a t i o n i n t h e i r group.  T h i s s e t of c a t e g o r i e s , along w i t h the  n o e t i c / s t r u c t u r a l a s p e c t s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h each category, i s the outcome space. Pratt  (1990) p o s i t s , as a f i n a l v a l i d i t y t e s t f o r the  emergent or " d i s c o v e r e d " c a t e g o r i e s , t h a t each of the o r i g i n a l u n i t s o f meaning must l o g i c a l l y f i t w i t h i n a c o n c e p t u a l  category.  72 In t h i s study, the s t a b i l i t y of  and q u a l i t a t i v e l y d i f f e r e n t  nature  each c a t e g o r y o f d e s c r i p t i o n , or c o n c e p t i o n , was e s t a b l i s h e d  through two  two  graduate  task  independent judge r e l i a b i l i t y students who  ( S t a l k e r , 1989).  t e s t s u s i n g , as  judges,  were s e r i o u s about and s e n s i t i v e t o the  The judges were g i v e n d e s c r i p t i o n s of each  c o n c e p t i o n and asked t o p l a c e the o r i g i n a l u n i t s o f meaning w i t h i n these conceptions, as d e s c r i b e d by the r e s e a r c h e r . was of  96-97% f i n a l  agreement between my  placement, as r e s e a r c h e r ,  u n i t s of meaning w i t h i n the c a t e g o r i e s and the  placement of these.  There  judges'  A d e t a i l e d t a b l e of the judges'  and disagreement i s i n c l u d e d i n Appendix F.  agreement  73  IV. RESULTS  T h i s chapter p r e s e n t s t h e f i n d i n g s o f t h i s r e s e a r c h , t h e c o n c e p t i o n s o f power d e r i v e d from t h e women who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s study.  I t begins w i t h a d e s c r i p t i o n o f t h e respondents'  c o n c e p t i o n s o f power, as they experienced i t s o p e r a t i o n i n t h e all-women t r a i n i n g group which was t h e c o n t e x t f o r t h i s exploration.  Marton (1981) d i s t i n g u i s h e s between c o n c e p t i o n s and  c a t e g o r i e s o f meaning. Conceptions  refer to the actual  e x p e r i e n c e d and/or c o n c e p t u a l i z e d r e a l i t y o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l s concerned,  whereas c a t e g o r i e s o f meaning a r e "simply a b s t r a c t  t o o l s used t o c h a r a c t e r i z e t h e c o n c e p t i o n s . They r e p r e s e n t an attempt  t o f o r m a l i z e t h e r e s e a r c h e r ' s understanding  conceptions"  of the  (Beaty, D a l l ' A l b a & Marton, i n p r e s s ) . The  c a t e g o r i e s , i n t h e form o f t h e outcome s p a c e — w h i c h d e s c r i b e s t h e c o n c e p t i o n s and s e r v e s as an i l l u s t r a t i o n o f t h e i r i n t e r c o n n e c t e d n e s s — i s presented as a simple model o f power as a p r o c e s s which moves from "being" t o " a c t i o n " t o " i n t e r a c t i o n " and,  c o r r e s p o n d i n g l y , from a " p r i v a t e " t o a " p u b l i c " c o n t e x t .  T h i s i s f o l l o w e d by a b r i e f d i s c u s s i o n o f t h e r e s u l t s , an overview  including  o f t h e complex i n t e r c o n n e c t i o n s between c o n c e p t i o n s .  A.  Women's Conceptions  o f Power  The outcome space p o r t r a y s t h e range v a r y i n g understandings  o f t h e respondents'  o f power, as they experienced i t s  operation, i n d i f f e r e n t situations occurring t r a i n i n g group.  within their  In t h i s sense, t h e focus i s on v a r i a t i o n , not on  74  essence  o r t h e m e s — a l t h o u g h we do, of course, l o o k a t  within i n d i v i d u a l conceptions. p r e s e n t e d by the women who  essence  In working w i t h the data  p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s study, I have  d i s c o v e r e d s i x q u a l i t a t i v e l y d i f f e r e n t c o n c e p t i o n s o f power, which are p r e s e n t e d below.  The r e f e r e n t i a l or noematic aspects  o f each c o n c e p t i o n are p r e s e n t e d as the g l o b a l meaning o r the "what" o f the c o n c e p t i o n s themselves.  The  s t r u c t u r a l or n o e t i c  a s p e c t s of the conceptions are r e v e a l e d i n the p a r t i c u l a r " p o i n t s of view" through which each c o n c e p t i o n i s seen;  this  " d i r e c t e d n e s s - o f thought" w i t h i n each c o n c e p t i o n a l s o h i g h l i g h t s the i n t e r r e l a t e d n e s s of c o n c e p t i o n s .  In our d i s c u s s i o n of  i n d i v i d u a l c o n c e p t i o n s , we pay p a r t i c u l a r a t t e n t i o n t o the s t r u c t u r a l / n o e t i c a s p e c t s which e i t h e r mark t r a n s i t i o n s from c o n c e p t i o n t o another,  f o r example: (a) f o c u s , (b) p r o c e s s ,  one and  (c) c o n t e x t — o r t o the s t r u c t u r a l / n o e t i c a s p e c t s which stand out as obvious l i n k s between conceptions of power, demonstrating i n t e r r e l a t e d n e s s between the d i f f e r e n t ways the  the  respondents  e x p e r i e n c e d power; an example of the l a t t e r i s "source" of power. Because of the complexity of the phenomenon under study because d i f f e r e n t aspects  and  (or "fragments") of c o n c e p t i o n s are  expressed by d i f f e r e n t respondents,  the c o n c e p t i o n s which f o l l o w  focus on the r e f e r e n t i a l aspect and those n o e t i c a s p e c t s , mentioned above, which s t r i k e the r e s e a r c h e r as most predominant or i n t e r e s t i n g .  T h i s i s c o n s i s t e n t w i t h the accepted view o f the  r e s u l t s of phenomenographic r e s e a r c h as a " d i s c o v e r y " of the researcher.  The o r d e r i n g of the outcome space  i s also a  c o n s t r u c t of the r e s e a r c h e r and c e r t a i n l y should not be seen  as  75 the  " c o r r e c t " or  "only"  related categories progression, i n any  Nor does  follows  any p a r t i c u l a r c o n c e p t i o n d e s c r i b e a  that  i n r e l a t i o n t o a number  at  one p o i n t  portrays  this  of  a map o f  differently.  a region  group,  intraindividual variation thought. as  is  and i t  of thought  different  As p o i n t e d o u t  1. la. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.  our f i n d i n g s  conceptions  results  o f power.  These  and e x p e r i e n c e degree.  inter-individual  i n C h a p t e r II,  in six  C o n c e p t i o n One:  Categories  Power i s  Women who h e l d t h i s of being  of  t h e women  research, of  held  power.  qualitatively  are:  Meaning  personal  integrity  c o n c e p t i o n d e s c r i b e d power a s  i n touch with themselves  at  in  space  Integrity Entitlement Expressing Integrity/Congruence Self-Determination Agency/Competence Respected Standing Influence  The Outcome S p a c e :  process  thus  or l e s s e r  as w e l l as  common i n p h e n o m e n o g r a p h i c  of  of  The outcome  several—even apparently c o n f l i c t i n g — c o n c e p t i o n s A summary  about  s h e w o u l d v i e w power i n one way a n d ,  experience i t  be s e e n a s  context,  over which each respondent ranged t o a g r e a t e r  variation  particular  E a c h woman who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h e d i s c u s s i o n s  another s i t u a t i o n ,  It  simple  developmental or h i e r a r c h i c a l  e x p e r i e n c e s w i t h i n the group  could thus  a  The  sense.  power e x p r e s s e d h e r c o n c e p t i o n s different  the conceptions.  o f d e s c r i p t i o n do i l l u s t r a t e  b u t c a n n o t be s e e n a s  "value"  respondent.  way t o o r g a n i z e  the  a v e r y deep  level,  in  76 which i n v o l v e d "knowing" themselves c o m f o r t a b l e w i t h themselves.  and f e e l i n g "whole" and  Power, i n t h i s sense, was sometimes  seen as r e c o g n i z i n g and a c c e p t i n g , without  defensiveness,  p e r s o n a l weaknesses as w e l l as s t r e n g t h s .  T h i s c o n c e p t i o n seems  to  r e f l e c t t h e i n n e r s t r e n g t h and energy  of a self-connectedness  which comes from having forged b e l i e f s , v a l u e s and knowing i n t o a personal unity. The f i r s t t h i n g t h a t comes t o mind..is having t h a t s t r o n g sense o f who I am. (A-8) So I t h i n k t h e r e ' s power i n j u s t being..uhm..happy w i t h your s e l f . (G-54) I f e e l i t (power) r i g h t i n t h e r e ( p o i n t i n g t o c e n t r e o f h e r body)... coming out o f who you are..and..what you can do..and b e i n g comfortable w i t h that..uh because..we a l l . . t h e r e are a s p e c t s o f our l i v e s t h a t . , d e s p i t e . . A l b e r t E l l i s (laughs) one can..I think..one cannot c o n t r o l . (B-61) I f we have..developed..whether through..someone e l s e ' s n u r t u r i n g o f us..or..through our own s e l f - n u r t u r i n g . . a sense of power w i t h i n o u r s e l v e s . . s o t h a t we f e e l a whole person. (B-55) For some women, t h i s self-knowledge  i n c l u d e d an awareness o f  t h e i r r o o t s o r h i s t o r y as an aspect o f t h e i r p e r s o n a l integration.  T h i s aspect o f power as p e r s o n a l i n t e g r i t y was f e l t  as a p e r s o n a l c o n n e c t i o n t o women's achievements and s t r e n g t h and might come through knowing t h e s t o r i e s o f t h e i r mothers o r other female  f a m i l y members, o r through  f e e l i n g r e l a t e d t o women's  c o n t r i b u t i o n s i n t h e world. I f e l t t h e power growing i n me as I..read a b o u t . . s c i e n t i s t s t h a t no one had ever heard o f . . o r j u s t p i o n e e r women...who managed t o do tremendous f e a t s w i t h no support..and..and then going back, o f course, t o t h e r e l i g i o n s . . u h . . w a y b a c k . . t h a t were based i n t h e power o f women. And s e e i n g how t h e s e had been changed so d r a m a t i c a l l y w i t h male C h r i s t i a n i t y . . a n d j u s t g e t t i n g i n . . g e t t i n g i n touch w i t h t h a t whole power base t h a t we have. I thought, "Women have got t o understand how powerful we a r e . " (C-7)  77  And then t h a t . . t h a t f i t s i n t o my p h i l o s o p h y o f knowing our c o n t i n u i t y as women. As..our p e r s o n a l h i s t o r i e s . I wanna know about my female r e l a t i v e s . . a s w e l l as j u s t our h i s t o r y i n t h e world. (C-12) Sometimes, t h e p e r s o n a l i n t e g r i t y , which i s t h e core meaning of  t h i s c o n c e p t i o n i n c l u d e s a s t r o n g sense o f purposiveness i n  life.  The women who expressed  t h i s aspect o f t h e c o n c e p t i o n  d e s c r i b e d f e e l i n g a v e r y s t r o n g commitment t o t h e i r work i n l i f e , or t h e i r " p a t h s " — a  f e e l i n g o f "knowing" why they a r e here.  Yeah! I t ' s f i n d i n g t h a t p e r s o n a l sense o f meaning. (B-51) There's a l s o a v e r y s p i r i t u a l a s p e c t . . t o it..uhm..you know..not i n a n y . . t r a d i t i o n a l . . r e a l l y formal way. I t ' s t h e sense o f belonging..being i n t h e r i g h t p l a c e a t t h e r i g h t time..you know, we're here f o r a reason..and I have work t o do. (C-50) The  focus, i n t h i s c o n c e p t i o n i s always inward,  self-awareness.  F o r some women, t h a t inward  focus expanded t h e i r  experience o f power t o i n c l u d e a s p i r i t u a l dimension. expressed B's  on p e r s o n a l  This i s  i n t h e l a s t quoted excerpt above, as w e l l as below, i n  response  t o my request t o e x p l a i n h e r use o f t h e word " s o u l "  as a synonym f o r power. understanding  In s t r u g g l i n g t o a r t i c u l a t e h e r  o f t h i s , she s a i d :  ...I don't know t h a t I'm s p i r i t . . o r . . u h . . s p i r i t i n the sense o f energy..but..that I see i t as s e l f - g r o u n d e d . . not..not t r a n s p e r s o n a l . . y o u know..I don't t h i n k . . I don't see t h i s source o f s p i r i t o r s o u l coming..from o u t s i d e o n e s e l f . . I see i t as growing out of..one's s e l f (laughs) I f e e l i t r i g h t i n there (pointing t o centre o f her body)..coming out o f who you are..and..what you can do..and b e i n g comfortable with that...(B-61) Another respondent  says:  I t ' s l i k e . . i t ' s not...I know a l o t o f people t a l k about h i g h e r s e l v e s o r they t a l k about....uhm..their s p i r i t u a l b e l i e f s . . l i k e . . u h . . t h e i r . . t h e i r . . s o m e t h i n g coming from  78  o u t s i d e t h e m s e l v e s . . l i k e a Godcentre o r something l i k e I don't see i t i n t h a t way. Interviewer: you?  that.  You see i t more as something t h a t comes out o f  Yes..Yes! Interviewer: Right! The  C e n t r a l t o you.  (F-42)  p r o c e s s o f power here i n v o l v e s "being."  i n t r a p e r s o n a l i n t h e sense t h a t even when t h e r e o f some type,  It is i s external  input  t h e i n d i v i d u a l i s always i n v o l v e d i n a s s i m i l a t i n g  t h a t i n a way t h a t makes i t not o n l y hers, but a l s o p a r t o f her, and  adds t o h e r self-knowledge o r s e l f - a w a r e n e s s .  t h i s i s found i n t h e aspect  o f t h i s conception  which  women knowing women's h i s t o r y and, through t h a t , and  adding t o t h e i r self-knowledge.  An example o f involves  strengthening  Feedback from o t h e r s can  a l s o be " g r i s t f o r t h e m i l l " i n t h i s p r o c e s s o f self-knowledge, and  t h a t i s i l l u s t r a t e d i n B's words: I f you h e l p people t o empower t h e m s e l v e s — t o f e e l good about themselves.... they can uhm...hear..all feedback., p o s i t i v e and negative..uhm..and i n c o r p o r a t e t h a t i n t o t h e i r s e l f u n d e r s t a n d i n g . ..(B-33) The  "why" o f p o w e r — i t s purpose o r g o a l — i n c o n c e p t i o n one  i s n o t c l e a r l y a r t i c u l a t e d , but t h e i n f e r e n c e seems t o be an i n t e n t o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l t o be " t r u e " t o h e r s e l f i n e x p e r i e n c i n g who she r e a l l y i s , i n an i n t e g r a t e d n o n - c o n f l i c t e d way.  This  comes out o f such statements a s : ...there i s a l s o . . a sense o f power i n becoming who you t r u l y a r e . (H-23). The  data supports my hunch t h a t conception  number one i s  79 integral power.  t o and i n c l u d e d i n e a c h o f t h e r e m a i n i n g c o n c e p t i o n s This  is  Conception l a :  p a r t i c u l a r l y obvious  Power i s  a sense o f  F o r one woman, t h e w h o l e n e s s  i n c o n c e p t i o n l a and  human r i g h t s  virtue  of being.  belonging,  and s e l f - a c c e p t a n c e i m p l i c i t  which are h e r s ,  and v e r y r o o t e d i n  encompasses  by  a feeling  a f e e l i n g o f d e s e r v i n g t o be a t home i n t h e w o r l d ,  it  fairly  in available  in  the  and e v e r y i n d i v i d u a l ' s ,  Her e x p r e s s i o n o f t h i s  t a k e up s p a c e and t o s h a r e describes  2.  entitlement  c o n c e p t i o n 1 i n c l u d e d b e i n g aware o f , basic  of  resources.  of to  She  as:  . . . t h a t s t r o n g s e n s e o f who I a m . . a n d . . t h a t I h a v e a r i g h t t o be h e r e . And I h a v e a r i g h t t o t a k e up s p a c e . . . . f o r y e a r s , I r e a l l y b e l i e v e d . . t h a t t h e few crumbs were what was r i g h t f u l l y m i n e , i n s t e a d o f s a y i n g , " W a i t a m i n u t e ! Where's t h e cake? Y o u ' r e h i d i n g i t ! . . . S o , yeah, i t ' s v e r y much e n t i t l e m e n t . (C-8,9) The i n c l u s i o n o f c o n c e p t i o n l a illuminates  and i l l u s t r a t e s  phenomenography—namely, conceptions,  sense  case, of  strength  one o f t h e s t r e n g t h s  that  a focus  space  of  on t h e r a n g e  of  r a t h e r t h a n a s e a r c h f o r e s s e n c e among them,  e n r i c h e s our understanding this  i n t h e outcome  although  o f t h e phenomenon b e i n g d e s c r i b e d .  o n l y one r e s p o n d e n t c l e a r l y a r t i c u l a t e d a  e n t i t l e m e n t as  a r e f e r e n t i a l aspect  and c l a r i t y o f h e r e x p r e s s i o n  o f power,  of t h i s  the  a l e r t e d me t o  expression,  by s e v e r a l o t h e r r e s p o n d e n t s ,  as  o f power a s  influence  t h e i r expression  this,  the respondents  i n f l u e n c e on o t h e r s  In  a structural  aspect  (conception 6).  In  d e s c r i b e women's  power t o h a v e i m p a c t  i n o r d e r t o g e t what t h e y want as  its  of or  severely  80 l i m i t e d by t h e i r l a c k of a sense of e n t i t l e m e n t , or  deserving.  These respondents c i t e gender-bias r e s u l t i n g i n l a c k of s o c i a l support entitlement.  as a f a c t o r a f f e c t i n g women's sense o f T h i s seems congruent with the view of i n t e g r i t y  e n t i t l e m e n t expressed  above as an i n t e g r a t i o n o f i n t e r n a l  and  and  e x t e r n a l i n t o a p e r s o n a l u n i t y , i . e . knowing our h i s t o r y , or i n c o r p o r a t i n g feedback from o t h e r s i n t o our view of o u r s e l v e s . Thus, although  the focus i n c o n c e p t i o n  1 and  l a i s inward  p e r s o n a l , on the " p r i v a t e " s e l f , t h a t s e l f i s , of course, l e a s t i n p a r t , s o c i a l l y c o n s t r u c t e d and  and at  s o c i a l l y i n f l u e n c e d . In  d i s c u s s i n g women's l a c k of e n t i t l e m e n t , E  says:  When i t comes r i g h t down t o . . l i k e . . a t t i t u d e s . . a n d . . w e l l entrenched b e l i e f s , and so on..that one has grown up w i t h . . s o c i a l i z e d i n t o and a l l t h a t s t u f f . . . t h e r e i s n ' t much of a s h i f t , I don't t h i n k . . t h e y ' r e s t i l l hanging on..they're r e l y i n g on those u n d e r l y i n g b e l i e f s , and i f t h e y ' r e r e a l l y put i n a corner, and.. c e r t a i n l y i f i t has anything t o do with..you know..being threatened b y . . a n o t h e r . . c e r t a i n l y a woman's power..I t h i n k the r e a l b e l i e f comes out..which i s . . y e s . . t h e y (men) deserve t o be on top. And women..have no r i g h t . . t o be up t h e r e . (E-10) And  F, i n d i s c u s s i n g her o p i n i o n t h a t the awareness of  women, heightened  by the f e m i n i s t movement, hasn't been  t r a n s l a t e d i n t o p e r s o n a l a c t i o n by many women, s t a t e s : ...and c e r t a i n l y women have done a l o t of t a l k i n g about the importance o f . . e q u a l i t y , and not j u s t e q u a l i t y f o r women, but e q u a l i t y on a g l o b a l s c a l e , but..we haven't y e t moved..I t h i n k a l o t of us have not y e t moved t o a p l a c e where..we're r e a l l y w i l l i n g t o a c t on..we haven't become p e r s o n a l l y empowered t o a p o i n t where we can a c t on..a l o t of the i n f o r m a t i o n t h a t we have....I t h i n k a l o t of women s t i l l . . a r e s t i l l s t r u g g l i n g . . w i t h f e e l i n g t h a t they have a r i g h t . . t o . . p u t t h e i r b e l i e f s about power i n t o a c t i o n . That s t i l l comes from a l o t of f e a r . . . c a u s e we s t i l l have to..have t o l i v e i n a world which i s v e r y uh...you know, patriarchal..(ma)..male-oriented.. (F-84,85)  81 These i n f e r r e d e x p r e s s i o n s of c o n c e p t i o n l a through n o e t i c a s p e c t s o f another c o n c e p t i o n a l s o i l l u s t r a t e the v a r i a t i o n among respondents Marton  of what i s s t r e s s e d o r focused on.  According to  (1988):  I t i s a v a r i a t i o n i n p e r s p e c t i v e , i n the p o i n t o f view from which the scene d e f i n i n g the c o n c e p t i o n i s seen; i t i s a v a r i a t i o n i n the f i g u r e - g r o u n d s t r u c t u r e superimposed on t h a t scene. We may dare t o c o n j e c t u r e on the p o i n t of d e p a r t u r e o f t h i s v a r i a t i o n ; we have here a h y p o t h e t i c a l c a n d i d a t e f o r an i n t e r n a l e x p l a n a t o r y mechanism of t r a n s i t i o n s between c o n c e p t i o n s , (p. 51) T h i s " t r a n s i t i o n between c o n c e p t i o n s " r e f e r s t o w i t h i n v a r i o u s conceptions which may S i n c e , as p o i n t e d out elsewhere  repeated  p r o v i d e l i n k s between them.  i n t h i s study,  individuals  c o n s i d e r a phenomenon i n r e l a t i o n t o d i f f e r e n t s i t u a t i o n s e x p e r i e n c e s , the respondents' understandably, it  focii  understandings  and  of power w i l l ,  v a r y a c c o r d i n g t o the p a r t i c u l a r c o n t e x t i n which  i s b e i n g viewed or experienced.  T h i s example of a  n o e t i c / s t r u c t u r a l aspect of c o n c e p t i o n 6 throwing  light  on  c o n c e p t i o n l a i s an example of the complexity of e x p r e s s i o n of c o n c e p t i o n s , a r i s i n g out of the i n f i n i t e v a r i e t y of l i f e - w o r l d e x p e r i e n c e and i s j u s t one  i n s t a n c e o f the r e c u r r i n g  i n t e r r e l a t e d n e s s of conceptions of power which t h i s outcome space i l l u s t r a t e s a g a i n and a g a i n .  One  i m p l i c a t i o n of the  above, which c o u l d be seen as "fragments"  quotes  (Beaty, D a l l ' A l b a &  Marton, i n press) of c o n c e p t i o n l a (at l e a s t i n s o f a r as they some l i g h t on t h a t c o n c e p t i o n and thus add t o our  shed  understanding  o f the p o s s i b l e v a r i a t i o n i n the experience o f power) i s t h a t e n t i t l e m e n t can be seen as a l i n k between c o n c e p t i o n 1 and  the  remaining c o n c e p t i o n s i n t h i s outcome space i n t h a t c o n c e p t i o n l a  82 may  be seen as a b r i d g e between "being" and  world.  " a c t i n g " i n the  T h i s c a r r i e s us from the p r i v a t e , p e r s o n a l l e v e l of  c o n c e p t i o n 1 t o the s o c i a l l e v e l o f c o n c e p t i o n  Conception  2:  2.  Power i s e x p r e s s i n g p e r s o n a l i n t e g r i t y / c o n g r u e n c e  T h i s c o n c e p t i o n encompasses number 1 (see above) and i t one  s t e p f u r t h e r — f r o m the i n t e r n a l , or p e r s o n a l , p r i v a t e  world t o the e x t e r n a l , o r s o c i a l world. conception l a , i s s t i l l  l a are expressed  the  Thus, a t i t ' s most b a s i c ,  c o n c e p t i o n 2 means a c t i n g out of and  i t ' s l i k e a statement  i t ' s "self-in  "self-connectedness" of conception 1  i n action.  and p e r s o n a l i n t e g r i t y .  The emphasis here, as i n  on " s e l f " but now  world," as the "knowing" and and  takes  " a c t i n g out" s e l f knowledge  For the women h o l d i n g t h i s  o f , " T h i s i s who  I am."  conception,  I t i n v o l v e s coming  out o f the p r i v a t e realm of the s e l f i n t o the p u b l i c realm of the world and r e v e a l i n g or showing themselves,  through words and/or  a c t i o n s , as they r e a l l y a r e — s t r e n g t h s and weaknesses.  As i n  c o n c e p t i o n 1, the focus i s on the s e l f , but the p r o c e s s i s  now  i n t e r p e r s o n a l a t l e a s t i n the sense of a c t i o n i n the world  and  sometimes i n the sense of a c t i v e l y engaging or i n t e r a c t i n g w i t h o t h e r s i n some  way.  ...power f o r me..uhm..in this...instance..uhm...would be. .mostly. . .a sense, .of responding. . .with i n t e g r i t y . . o f responding...honestly..uh..outwardly..uh as an e x p r e s s i o n of what my..my f e e l i n g s and m y . . . b e l i e f s a r e . . i n w a r d l y . So t h a t t o me i s power. And t h e r e would be a conguence between..what I f e e l and know...and w h a t . . I . . e x p r e s s . . . b e h a v i o u r a l l y . (F-32) When I t h i n k of power, u h . . i n t h a t sense, I t h i n k of..uh..uhm..feeling good about y o u r s e l f . . . f e e l i n g c o n f i d e n t and f e e l i n g s t r o n g , and t h e r e f o r e not b e i n g a f r a i d . . . t o share experiences..not b e i n g a f r a i d to..uhm..to make  83 decisions..uhm..and g i v e o p i n i o n s . You know b e i n g who you are, s h a r i n g who you a r e . . s h a r i n g your views and your thoughts and your experiences...(H-37) So, i t comes from j u s t t h i s . . f e l t sense..now, t h a t what you see i s what you get. T h i s i s who I am..I'm not about t o change i t f o r you..uh..and I'm not going t o p l a y games with you. (C-8) I t ' s l i k e . . u h m . . i t • s a c e n t r a l core of knowingness..and I don't r e a l l y know how t o put words t o i t . . . I t ' s l i k e I f e e l t h a t t h e r e ' s an a s p e c t . . o f myself..which i s constant..and from which..I can express m y s e l f . . i f I can k i n d of get the..you know..the smoke rays o r the cobwebs..or the extraneous s t u f f out of the way. (F-42) Sometimes t h i s c o n c e p t i o n  i s about a s s e r t i v e n e s s i n the  sense o f s t a n d i n g up f o r y o u r s e l f , o r f o r what you b e l i e v e — "speaking  your t r u t h . "  The  fundamental g o a l of a s s e r t i v e n e s s  here i s always t o a c t or present s e l f — t o maintain, number 1. 2  i n a way  p u b l i c l y , the p e r s o n a l  t h a t i s t r u e t o the i n t e g r i t y of  conception  T h i s p a r t i c u l a r s t r u c t u r a l / n o e t i c aspect o f  conception  (the "why," or i n t e n t of a c t i o n ) i s a watershed between the  a c t i o n of c o n c e p t i o n  2 and t h a t of a l l remaining  conceptions,  where the i n t e n t o f power through a c t i o n / a s s e r t i v e n e s s may  may  or  not i n c l u d e the i n t e n t t o s t a y t r u e t o s e l f but i s not  limited to that.  The  f o l l o w i n g quotes d i s c u s s a s s e r t i v e n e s s as  the e x p r e s s i o n of p e r s o n a l  integrity  (and e n t i t l e m e n t ) :  W e l l , i n t h a t situation....how I saw power was...uhm a couple of ways..one was..having enough c o n f i d e n c e f o r me t o speak my mind..on something t h a t I f e l t was r i g h t , or not r i g h t . . s o t h a t was power from w i t h i n , t h a t I had t o f e e l t h a t i t was my..sort of..duty t o do t h a t . . ( S o t h a t k i n d of power i s ) c o n f i d e n c e and...uhm..standing up f o r what you believe. (G-30) But i t ' s c e r t a i n l y . . . a w i l l i n g n e s s . . t o take up space i n the world. To stand up t o be counted..uhm..to take up some space. (C-28)  84 Conception  3:  Power i s s e l f - d e t e r m i n a t i o n  T h i s c o n c e p t i o n c o u l d be seen as an e x t e n s i o n o f the " a c t i o n " o f c o n c e p t i o n 2 i n t o a sense or experience  of  " a b l e n e s s , " of having e f f e c t — i n t h i s case, on one's own B expresses  life.  t h i s as:  And..being a b l e . . t o . . u h . . c o n t r o l your environment.... i n a way t h a t . . t h a t works f o r you and f o r o t h e r people. (B-42) T h i s c o n n e c t i o n w i t h c o n c e p t i o n 2 i s c l e a r l y expressed the n o e t i c "fragments"  of the respondents'  i n many of  a r t i c u l a t i o n of t h i s  c o n c e p t i o n , which d e s c r i b e t h i s power as proceeding out of the " i n n e r power" or expressed  i n t e g r i t y of c o n c e p t i o n 2.  For  example, B says: ...sees o p t i o n s f o r h e r s e l f . . . t h a t come..out o f . . h e r s e l f . . a n d not out of imposed choices..or embedded i n s o c i e t y . . o r o t h e r s ' p e r c e p t i o n s . . b u t bedded i n women's own..perceptions of themselves. (B-4) Some respondents other d i r e c t i o n ,  d e s c r i b e the c o n n e c t i o n as movement i n the  i . e . the " i n n e r power" of c o n c e p t i o n 1 and 2 i s  a f f e c t e d by " p o w e r - a s - s e l f - d e t e r m i n a t i o n . "  In d e s c r i b i n g her  own  e x p e r i e n c e o f not f e e l i n g t h i s power, H s t a t e s : I t h i n k i n o r d e r t o have t h a t i n n e r power, or t h a t i n n e r s t r e n g t h . . . i t goes hand i n hand w i t h c h o i c e . I don't t h i n k one would f e e l . . p o w e r f u l . . . o r one would f e e l s t r o n g , i f they had t o do something t h a t they d i d n ' t want t o do....what happened f o r me i n my own p e r s o n a l experience was t h a t I f e l t I had no c h o i c e . . . . and I f e l t s u f f o c a t e d and I f e l t s t i f l e d . . . . n o t o n l y powerless, but I f e l t , uhm..inadequate. I f e l t i n s e c u r e . . I f e l t uhm....not l i k i n g my s i t u a t i o n , not l i k i n g who I was..low s e l f - e s t e e m . . t h e r e ' s a l o t of f a c t o r s t h a t go i n t o b e i n g . . o r t o f e e l i n g powerless and h e l p l e s s . (H-33,34) These examples serve as a v e r y simple, p a r t i a l of  illustration  the s t r u c t u r a l aspects of conceptions which i n v o l v e  85 i n t e r c o n n e c t e d n e s s between conceptions i n t h e outcome space. Often, as i n these cases, respondents  expressed the c o n n e c t i o n s  i n t h e form o f one c o n c e p t i o n as "source" o r " i n f l u e n c e " on another.  An overview  o f t h e d i r e c t e d n e s s o f these  connections  between c o n c e p t i o n s i s p r e s e n t e d l a t e r i n t h i s c h a p t e r . The r e f e r e n t i a l aspect o f power here was experienced by t h e women who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s r e s e a r c h as a c a p a c i t y t o be i n charge o f t h e i r own l i v e s — t o make c h o i c e s , t o see o p t i o n s f o r themselves, Conception  and t o have some c o n t r o l over t h e i r own a f f a i r s . 3 thus i n v o l v e s the i n t r a p e r s o n a l / i n t e r p e r s o n a l  p r o c e s s e s o f s e l f - d e t e r m i n a t i o n which c o u l d be expressed as, "being r e s p o n s i b l e f o r myself," o r "running my own l i f e . " the respondents to  For  who expressed t h i s c o n c e p t i o n , t h i s o f t e n seemed  i n v o l v e t h e c a p a c i t y f o r independent  decision-making  a b i l i t y t o d i r e c t o r e f f e c t changes f o r themselves.  and the  F o r example:  You have t h e c h o i c e as t o whether you want t o uhm..do i t o r not. So then, handing us t h a t c h o i c e , and handing us t h e power t o d e c i d e f o r o u r s e l v e s what we want t o do. (H-35) . . . I t means so that...women f e e l good about t h e m s e l v e s . . . u h . . f e e l t h a t they can c o n t r o l t h e i r l i v e s and f e e l they have c h o i c e s — t h a t t h e y ' r e not under someone else's control..(B-3) Of course, b e i n g autonomous and independent  i m p l i e s being  r e s p o n s i b l e f o r o n e s e l f , and one women expressed h e r d i f f i c u l t y with that: W e l l , t h e power (she has i s ) she doesn't know..she's q u i t e f i n e without men...and want t o f e e l t h a t powerful because then r e s p o n s i b i l i t y than I'm w i l l i n g t o take t h r e a t e n i n g t o me... (D-30,31)  need men..you you see, I don't I have t o take more so i t ' s v e r y  86 As  i n c o n c e p t i o n 2,  self-in-the-world; context  is  the focus here i s  the process  public or s o c i a l .  is  still  inward,  on  a c t i n g o r i n t e r a c t i n g ; and t h e  The "why"  o f power h e r e ,  e x p a n d s b e i n g t r u e t o o n e s e l f t o an i n t e n t t o  however,  impact o n e ' s  own  destiny.  C o n c e p t i o n 4:  Power i s  agency/competence  A c o m m o n l y - e x p r e s s e d c o n c e p t i o n o f power i n v o l v e d operation i n the process the use o f utilizing  skills, one's  of g e t t i n g  knowledge,  things accomplished  or expertise, or  personal resources.  its through  gainfully  F o r some women t h i s  acting  i n a c o m p e t e n t and r e s p o n s i b l e manner t o  done,"  o r t o do t h i n g s  "get  " w e l l ; " more d r a m a t i c a l l y ,  it  the  meant job  sometimes  meant " s a v i n g "  a s i t u a t i o n o r " k n o w i n g what t o d o " when o t h e r s  were s t u m p e d .  It  t r a i n i n g group  for counsellors,  is  not s u r p r i s i n g ,  f o r many o f t h e r e s p o n d e n t s , ability.  This  is  that  considering the context of c o m p e t e n c e and s u c c e s s  associated with  expressed i n the following  a  were,  professional statements:  W e l l . . I . . h a d t h e power o f t h e s e s s i o n . . i n k n o w i n g i t went w e l l w h e t h e r ( t h e s u p e r v i s o r ) hugged me o r n o t . I h a d t h e p o w e r . (D-3 5) My power w o u l d b e . . . m y s t r e n g t h a s . . a s . . a . . a s a c o u n s e l l o r . . a s a student c o u n s e l l o r — m y competence, I  guess.  (E-44)  Yeah..I  felt  like  I'd  done my j o b r i g h t .  (C-37)  Power i s s k i l l . (E-45) I..I f e e l power i s t o be a b l e t o t a k e o v e r i n an e m e r g - n o t i n an emergency b u t a c r i s i s — t h a t ' s a l i t t l e t o o s t r o n g . . b u t t o . . . . s o m e t i m e s t o know what t o do when o t h e r s a r e s o r t o f s i t t i n g a r o u n d . (D-20)  87  I c o u l d be r e l i e d upon, and she saw me as a r e l i a b l e , r e s p o n s i b l e person who would g e t t h e j o b done..But I g u e s s . . I . . I see..power i n t h a t . A person i s powerful i f they are r e l i a b l e and r e s p o n s i b l e and g e t t h e j o b done. (E-56) At times, t h i s c o n c e p t i o n i s concerned  with confidence i n  the sense o f a woman's b e l i e f i n h e r c a p a c i t y t o be i n s t r u m e n t a l l y s u c c e s s f u l o r t o make p e r s o n a l g a i n s i n some way. One  respondent  d e s c r i b e s i t t h i s way:  Yeah, yeah! I f e l t power because I . . I was n o t a f r a i d o f t h s s i t u a t i o n , you know...D. j u s t threw out t h i s i d e a , and then I went w i t h i t , and I r a n w i t h i t , and succeeded a t it..was s u c c e s s f u l . (D-20) Another e x p r e s s i o n o f t h i s c o n c e p t i o n i m p l i e d " s t r e t c h i n g " t o do ones v e r y b e s t . T h i s c o u l d mean meeting a c h a l l e n g e , g e t t i n g through a c r i s i s o r s u r v i v i n g an o r d e a l and somehow g e t t i n g something out o f t h a t experience, no matter how unpleasant  i t had been.  The g a i n s i n these cases g e n e r a l l y  i n v o l v e d l e a r n i n g o r p e r s o n a l growth, as i l l u s t r a t e d i n t h e f o l l o w i n g examples: I t c o u l d a l s o . . y o u c o u l d a l s o say, you know, "What have I l e a r n e d from t h i s ? " and i n c r e a s e your p e r s o n a l power, b e c a u s e . . i t . . y o u c o u l d f e e l , " I ' l l never make t h i s c h o i c e a g a i n , and here's what I've l e a r n e d from i t . " And so, " I t wasn't f u n w h i l e i t l a s t e d , but..I get..you know, I can take something away from i t . " (B-59) ...power..part o f . . o f b e i n g i n power i s . . i s . . u s i n g . . y o u r . . a b i l i t y to the fullest...(H-24)  your  I t h i n k t h i n g s a r e put i n our path..so..the t h e . . h o r r i b l e b l a c k p e r i o d i n my l i f e . . I look back a t , and say, "Thank God!" I t was t h e b e s t t h i n g t h a t happened t o me..or I'd s t i l l be ( u n c l e a r ) . . . . so t h a t was, you know..the most empowering experience i n my l i f e . . w a s . . . l o o k i n g death i n t h e face! (C-51) The  focus here i s on s e l f , t h e p r o c e s s i n v o l v e s a c t i n g o r  interacting,  and t h e c o n t e x t i s p u b l i c o r s o c i a l .  The "why" o f  8  8  the p r o c e s s here, however, i s t o be " s u c c e s s f u l " o r t o make gains.  The emphasis here i s always on t h e a b i l i t y o f t h e  i n d i v i d u a l t o g a i n f u l l y u t i l i z e her personal resources.  Unlike  conception  5, which may a l s o i n v o l v e competence o r s k i l l s ,  conception  4 does not imply comparison w i t h  Conception  5:  Power i s r e s p e c t e d  Another expressed  others.  standing  c o n c e p t i o n o f power among t h e women t a k i n g  p a r t i n t h i s r e s e a r c h p r o j e c t , c e n t r e d around t h e experience o f power as g a i n i n g o r h o l d i n g a r e s p e c t e d p o s i t i o n v i s - a - v i s others.  T h i s c o n c e p t i o n d e s c r i b e s t h e experience  b e i n g regarded  as a person  o f power as  of s i g n i f i c a n c e — b e i n g v a l i d a t e d , or  a t l e a s t acknowledged by o t h e r s , although  i t c o u l d c e n t r e around  a woman's own p e r c e p t i o n o f h e r p o s i t i o n o r s t a n d i n g i n t h e group.  A t any r a t e , i t ' s always about b e i n g seen (or s e e i n g  o n e s e l f ) as a t l e a s t "equal" t o o t h e r s and, sometimes, as "more e q u a l . " The focus here i s on t h e p e r c e p t i o n o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l by o t h e r s , s i n c e , a t l e a s t by i n f e r e n c e , t h e i n d i v i d u a l i s always considered  i n comparison t o o t h e r s .  In t h a t instance..uhm..she f e e l s powerless..uhm..she p r o b a b l y l o o k s a t her s k i l l s i n r e l a t i o n s h i p t o t h e r e s t o f us....and..probably i n comparison, she j u s t f e e l s so d i m i n i s h e d . (F-70) A s t r o n g statement o f t h e " i n comparison" theme which runs through t h i s c o n c e p t i o n  i s found  i n t h e d e s c r i p t i o n o f power as a  h i e r a r c h i c a l s t r u c t u r e . E says: ...some time i n the l a s t two o r t h r e e minutes I was..suddenly i t occured t o me...I wonder....if I had t o arrange people i n ( l a u g h s ) . . i n l e v e l s o f power i n t h e group..how would I do t h a t ? Cause I d i d s t a r t o f f towards the b e g i n n i n g . . s a y i n g . . t h a t I see u s . . s o r t o f working as a  89 group..you know..as equals I guess when you take a l l the o u t e r wrappings o f f . . . . a n d uhm..be h o n e s t . . I f I take a l l the o u t e r wrappings of and be honest about i t , I would see a k i n d of..uh..from my p e r s p e c t i v e . . a k i n d of h i e r a r c h y of power...((E-68) E expressed  t h i s p r o c e s s , i n another  s i t u a t i o n , as  "eliciting  respect." W e l l , t o me, I guess, i t ' s (power)...commanding r e s p e c t . . f r o m o t h e r s . . o r not commanding i t . . i . . i t . . i t sounds l i k e such a m i l i t a r y w o r d . . u h . . e l i c i t s r e s p e c t from o t h e r people. (E-32) Her e x p r e s s i o n i s i n t e r e s t i n g as one of the few t h a t focused on the i n d i v i d u a l concerned  as " a c t o r " and not, as most  e x p r e s s i o n s of t h i s c o n c e p t i o n as " r e c i p i e n t " o f the power.  This  o u t s i d e focus on the "other" i s a movement from the inward  focus  on s e l f i n h e r e n t i n a l l p r e v i o u s l y d e s c r i b e d c o n c e p t i o n s .  With  t h i s change, power i s sometimes d e s c r i b e d as though i t were an o b j e c t which i s " g i v e n " t o another,  as i n the f o l l o w i n g examples:  Power's having r e s p e c t . . . h e r e ' s an i n s t a n c e o f her g i v i n g power..because she r e s p e c t s my o p i n i o n . (F-70)  me  And by doing t h a t , I g i v e them power, because they f e e l l i k e , "No, she's not above me. She's not a c t i n g l i k e she's above me." (G-45) I g i v e power t o those who The  "why"  have my  s o c i a l approval.  of power i n t h i s c o n c e p t i o n seems t o be  p e r c e p t i o n of s e l f as having v a l u e i n comparison t o  (D-27) the  others—being  "as good as" o r " b e t t e r than," b e i n g a person of s i g n i f i c a n c e . The c o n t e x t i s p u b l i c and the process i s a c t i n g or  interacting—  the s e l f i s always seen i n r e l a t i o n t o o t h e r s . Thus the focus i s on the o t h e r or, more a c c u r a t e l y , on the o t h e r ' s view of the actor.  90 Conception 6:  Power i s i n f l u e n c i n g o t h e r s  T h i s c o n c e p t i o n r e v o l v e s around t h e e x p e r i e n c e o f power as an i n t e r p e r s o n a l p r o c e s s o f i n f l u e n c i n g o t h e r s . Thus power i s o p e r a t i n g when one person i s i n f l u e n c i n g another o r o t h e r s , i n some way. The respondents d e s c r i b e d a v e r y wide v a r i e n c e o f meaning o f i n f l u e n c e , o r impact here. T h i s ranged  from  c o n t r o l l i n g , m a n i p u l a t i n g o r " w i e l d i n g power over" o t h e r s a t one pole; t o teaching, i n s p i r i n g ,  f a c i l i t a t i n g , nurturing, helping or  empowering, a t t h e o t h e r . Although t h e forms o f power v a r y here, what h o l d s c o n s t a n t i s i t s p u b l i c e x p r e s s i o n as i n t e r p e r s o n a l impact.  In t h i s c o n c e p t i o n the "why" o f t h e p r o c e s s i s r e v e a l e d  as t h e most important n o e t i c aspect. The respondents' of  experiences  power here, as w e l l as t h e i r a t t i t u d e s towards i t a r e s t r o n g l y  mediated  by g o a l , o r purpose. A l l t h e women expressed n e g a t i v e  r e a c t i o n s t o power as i n f l u e n c e when t h e g o a l was t o c o n t r o l o r manipulate to  i n o r d e r t o m a i n t a i n "the upper hand" over o t h e r s o r  make p e r s o n a l g a i n s a t another's expense. The d i f f e r e n c e s here  are i l l u s t r a t e d i n the f o l l o w i n g examples: ...because again, as I say..I see i t . . i t depends on how the power i s used...that•s t h e b i g . . . t h i n g . . . . I f i t ' s f o r f a c i l i t a t i v e , b e n e f i c i a l purposes...then, I'm f i n e w i t h i t . But i f i t ' s t h a t overpowering, m a n i p u l a t i v e , c o n t r o l l i n g s t u f f . . I don't want t o have a n y t h i n g t o do w i t h i t . . t h o u g h I know i t goes on a l l t h e time. (E-61) So i t can be a r e a l p o s i t i v e t h i n g , o r i t can be a r e a l l y b l a c k type o f energy..uhm..and I've worked w i t h people l i k e t h a t i n my l i f e , when I was i n t h e c o r p o r a t e world...I mean, they would..they would k i l l t h e i r mother t o g e t what they wanted. So I've seen t h a t energy operate on t h e d a r k e r s i d e of l i f e . (C-26) . . . i t ' s . . p o w ( e r ) . . i t ' s s o r t o f a u t h o r i t y t h a t she's been...given..that she can w i e l d over o t h e r people. So i t ' s a k i n d o f power over. (F-39)  91 Without e x c e p t i o n , t h e women i n t e r v i e w e d i n t h i s  study  d e s c r i b e d t h e power o f i n f l u e n c e as p o s i t i v e when t h e g o a l was t o b e n e f i t another p e r s o n — f o r example: t o f a c i l i t a t e l e a r n i n g o r growth; share  ; n u r t u r e o r empower. T h i s p o l e o f t h e v a r i a t i o n o f  meaning i n c o n c e p t i o n 6 was d e s c r i b e d as f o l l o w s : ...but i t ' s a p o s i t i v e power to..uh..to hear t h e need..and meet t h a t need.... and..uh..watch..watch t h e f r u i t o f the..you know..of having heard t h e need and met i t . (B-21) . . . t h a t f a c i l i t a t i n g r o l e t h a t c o u n s e l l o r s and t h e r a p i s t s p l a y , and t h a t n u r t u r i n g and c a r i n g and s t u f f . . t o me, t h a t ' s v e r y powerful.(E-53) ...she's not a f r a i d t o uhm..to c l e a r l y a r t i c u l a t e some o f h e r . . l i k e h e r t e c h n i c a l e x p e r t i s e . . . . i n terms o f s u g g e s t i n g t h a t t h i s might be..what's wrong....and maybe you should t r y t h i s o r t h a t k i n d o f approach.... and t h a t she's not a f r a i d t o take a c t i o n and s o r t o f . . . u h m . . f a c i l i t a t e l e a r n i n g . (G-39) I t h i n k i t ' s h e r power as..as a r o l e model...she's had t h e power, c e r t a i n l y , t o . . t o uhm... through h e r m o d e l l i n g . . t o . . . o h ! f a c i l i t a t e us having r e a l l y r e s p e c t e d each o t h e r . (H-27) Thus, s t r u c t u r i n g t h i s outcome space as a movement i n t h e respondents'  experience and understanding  "being" t o " a c t i o n " t o " i n t e r a c t i o n ; "  o f p o w e r — f r o m power as  from a p r i v a t e t o a p u b l i c  o r s o c i a l c o n t e x t ; and from a focus on s e l f t o a focus on other, c o n c e p t i o n 6 stands as i n t e r a c t i v e , s o c i a l and o t h e r - f o c u s e d .  B. The  D i s c u s s i o n : The Outcome Space  s i x conceptions o f power d e p i c t t h e d i f f e r e n t  e x p e r i e n c e s o f power expressed by t h e women who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s research.  As noted elsewhere,  t h e focus i n phenomenographic  r e s e a r c h i s on v a r i a t i o n , not commonality, and what has been d e s c r i b e d above i s t h e v a r i a t i o n w i t h i n and between c o n c e p t i o n s .  92 T a b l e 1 summarizes the outcome space and t r a n s i t i o n s between conceptions.  L i n k s Between  Conceptions  The data r e v e a l s s t r o n g evidence of the i n t e r c o n n e c t e d n e s s of c o n c e p t i o n s of power expressed by the respondents. these c o n n e c t i o n s were expressed, a t times, as  As  noted,  referential  a s p e c t s o f one c o n c e p t i o n becoming, i n another e x p r e s s i o n of power, the n o e t i c aspect of t h a t c o n c e p t i o n . was  What t h i s i n v o l v e d  a change i n the d i r e c t e d n e s s - o f - t h o u g h t , or f i g u r e - g r o u n d , so  t h a t the p r o c e s s expressed as the g l o b a l meaning of  one  c o n c e p t i o n i s seen, i n another case, as the source of another c o n c e p t i o n of p o w e r — o r , sometimes, as a m i t i g a t i n g or  expanding  i n f l u e n c e on power. For example, a t one p o i n t f e e l i n g whole and c o m f o r t a b l e might be experienced as power  (referential  p = i n t e g r i t y ) , whereas, i n another s i t u a t i o n , the  referental  aspect o f power might be seen as having an i n f l u e n c e on  another  person, and the n o e t i c aspect i n terms of source of t h a t i n f l u e n c e seen as the i n f l u e n c e r ' s "personhood," or her s t r o n g sense of who  she i s i n the world  o f p or n o e t i c p = i n t e g r i t y ) .  (referential  p=influence/source  An examination of the  respondents  1  t r a n s c r i p t s b r i n g s t o l i g h t a myriad of these c o n n e c t i o n s between c o n c e p t i o n s which are summarized i n the T a b l e 2.  Power Systems Sometimes respondents d i s c u s s e d c o n c e p t i o n s f e e d i n g i n t o another i n such a way  one  t h a t , f o r example, a c t i n g out a p a r t i c u l a r  93 T a b l e 1;  Outcome Space f o r Conceptions  o f Power  #  Meaning  Focus  Process  Context  1.  Integrity  Self  Being  Private  la  Entitlement  Self  Being  Private  2.  Expressing Integrity/Congruence  Self  Acting/ Interacting  Public/ Social  3.  Self-Determination  Self  Acting/ Interacting  Public/ Social  4.  Agency/Competence  Self  Acting/ Interacting  Public/ Social  5.  Respected  Other's View  Acting/ Interacting  Public/ Social  6.  Influence  Other  Interacting  Public/ Social  Standing  94  T a b l e 2:  "Source" o f Power as L i n k s Between  R e f e r e n t i a l Aspect #  Meaning  1  Personal  la  Entitlement  2  Expressing  3  as  N o e t i c Aspect/Source o f #  Integrity  Conceptions  Meaning  la 2 3 4 5 6  Entitlement Expressing Integrity Self-Determination Agency/competence Respected Standing Influence  2 3 5  Expressing I n t e g r i t y Influence Respected Standing  1 3 4 5 6  Integrity Self-Determination Agency/Competence Respected Standing Influence  Self-Determination  1 2  Integrity Expressing  4  Agency/Competence  1 la 2 3 5 6  Integrity Entitlement Expressing Integrity Self-Determination Respected Standing Influence  5  Respected  1 la 2 6  Integrity Entitlement Expressing I n t e g r i t y Influence  6  Influence  1 la 2 3 4 5  Integrity Entitlement Expressing I n t e g r i t y Self-Determination Agency/Competence Respected Standing  Integrity  Standing  Integrity  95 conception  o f power l e a d s t o another aspect  r e i n f o r c e s o r adds t o t h e o r i g i n a l aspect One such system was between c o n c e p t i o n  o f power which  o f power acted o u t .  1 and 2 and 4.  power o f f e e l i n g good about o n e s e l f and having  Thus t h e  a sense o f  p u r p o s i v e n e s s i n t h e world and a c t i n g on t h a t l e a d s t o agency/competence  which, i n t u r n , i n c r e a s e s t h e power o f f e e l i n g  good about o n e s e l f . as p e r s o n a l  Another i n t r a p e r s o n a l system i n v o l v e d power  i n t e g r i t y , l e a d i n g t o a c t i n g out o f t h a t , l e a d i n g t o  competence/agency  which, i n t u r n , gave t h e a c t o r a sense o f power  i n terms o f b e i n g s e l f - d e t e r m i n i n g i n h e r l i f e , i n t o and i n c r e a s e d h e r p e r s o n a l  and t h a t f e d back  integrity.  Sometimes power was d e s c r i b e d as a dynamic i n t e r a c t i v e system.  F o r example,  one i n d i v i d u a l might use power as i n f l u e n c e  t o f a c i l i t a t e another person t o t h e power o f c o n g r u e n c e — o r a c t i n g out t h e i r p e r s o n a l t h i s l a t t e r expression,  i n t e g r i t y i n t h e world.  In v a l u i n g  t h e o r i g i n a l a c t o r f a c i l i t a t e s t h e second  i n d i v i d u a l ' s power i n t h e sense o f f e e l i n g acknowledged and respected  w i t h i n t h e group.  I n t h e meantime, t h e second  i n d i v i d u a l i s i n c r e a s i n g t h e o r i g i n a l a c t o r ' s power by a l l o w i n g and a p p r e c i a t i n g h e r i n f l u e n c e .  T h i s i s an example o f a power  i n t e r a c t i o n over which each p a r t y has some c o n t r o l and which, i n the end, r e s u l t s i n mutual i n f l u e n c e . d e s c r i b e d t h i s w a y — a s a dynamic the sense o f women mutually one another.  Power was f r e q u e n t l y  system o f mutual i n f l u e n c e i n  n u r t u r i n g , v a l i d a t i n g and s u p p o r t i n g  One respondent s a i d , o f t h i s type o f power system,  "When power i s used f o r . . . g o o d . . i t ' s s o r t o f c a t c h i n g . I t ' s contagious!  I t g i v e s other people power" (D-36) . Another  96 respondent commented: "When you share power..if added t o . . b e c a u s e . . i t  1  engenders more...I guess I want t o say  self-power..and more..other-power" operation  anything..it s  (B-41) .  Thus, i n t h e  o f power when i t i n v o l v e s mutual i n f l u e n c e , " i t ' s not  l i k e two p l u s two i s f o u r . . . i t ' s e x p o n e n t i a l . . i t j u s t takes great leaps!"  (C-46)  An i n t e r e s t i n g aspect  respondents d e s c r i b e d the power t h r e s h o l d s  of t h i s i s that  sometimes  t h i s p r o c e s s o f power as, not o n l y  raising  o f everyone i n v o l v e d , but a l s o l e s s e n i n g or  removing the power d i f f e r e n t i a l between i n d i v i d u a l s which may have e x i s t e d a t the b e g i n n i n g o f the i n t e r a c t i o n . i n t e r a c t i v e system i s d e s c r i b e d  Power as an  f u r t h e r i n Chapter V.  97 V.  IMPLICATIONS OF FINDINGS  In o r d e r t o d i s c u s s t h e i m p l i c a t i o n s o f t h e r e s e a r c h f i n d i n g s o f t h i s study,  t h i s chapter  d i s c u s s i o n by b r i e f l y r e v i e w i n g theory concerning  sets the context f o r  some o f t h e r e l e v a n t r e s e a r c h and  t h e psychology o f power, f o c u s i n g , f i r s t , on  the l i t e r a t u r e d e a l i n g w i t h d e f i n i t i o n s o f power and, second, on women and power.  T h i s i s f o l l o w e d by a d i s c u s s i o n o f t h e  r e s e a r c h r e s u l t s as they  i l l u m i n a t e and a r e i l l u m i n a t e d by t h i s  literature.  concludes  The chapter  with i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r f u r t h e r  i n v e s t i g a t i o n s and i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r c o u n s e l l i n g .  A.  Research/Theory: The Psychology o f Power  For t h e purposes o f t h i s study,  the l i t e r a t u r e i n t h i s  area  i s d i s c u s s e d as two main t o p i c s : (a) d e f i n i t i o n s o f power, i n c l u d i n g t r a d i t i o n a l and c u r r e n t understandings o f t h e nature o f power, and  (b) women and p o w e r — f o c u s i n g on women's  developmentmental i s s u e s and t h e impact o f these on t h e i r a t t i t u d e s toward power.  The  The nature  o f power i s d i s c u s s e d  first.  Nature o f Power^ Power has t r a d i t i o n a l l y been d e f i n e d as t h e r i g h t o r a b i l i t y  to  control resources—material  and human—and  t o c o n t r o l core  s o c i a l i n s t i t u t i o n s , r e s u l t i n g i n the capacity t o influence o t h e r s ' behaviour (French & Raven, 1959; Perlman & Cozby, 1983; S h e r i f , 1982).  S o c i a l p s y c h o l o g i s t s have focused on  98 the l a t t e r h a l f o f t h i s d e f i n i t i o n i n d e s c r i b i n g power as t h e c a p a c i t y t o a f f e c t o t h e r people wants,  and t o g e t them t o do what one  even i f they demonstrate i n i t i a l r e s i s t a n c e t o t h i s  ( C a r t w r i g h t & Zander, 1968).  These views o f power see i t as a  r i g h t "which one i s a b l e t o possess l i k e a commodity"  (Foucault,  1980, p. 88). Thus a person o r group c o u l d c o l l e c t power and have i t f o r t h e i r own use. In t h i s frame, power i s seen as "power over" and t h e c a p a c i t y t o use o r w i e l d t h i s power over o t h e r s i s based on c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f the i n d i v i d u a l s i n v o l v e d — t h a t h o l d e r ' s power r e s i d e s i n some base  i s , t h e power-  (ex. a r o l e such as p r e s i d e n t  of a company), and t h e one b e i n g i n f l u e n c e d must accept, o r be f o r c e d t o accept, t h e o t h e r ' s domination o r i n f l u e n c e .  Most  t h e o r i s t s agree t h a t t h e r e a r e m u l t i p l e bases o f power, and French and Raven's (1959) e a r l y t y p o l o g y i s s t i l l model o f power viewed t h i s way. i n d i v i d u a l ' s power over another.  They l i s t e d These a r e :  seen as a v a l i d  f i v e bases f o r one reward power;  c o e r c i v e power; r e f e r e n t power; e x p e r t power; and r o l e power o r l e g i t i m a t e power.  Power g e n e r a l l y r e s t s i n some combination o f  these bases, which a r e d e s c r i b e d  below.  In u t i l i z i n g reward power, i n f l u e n c e i s based on t h e p e r c e i v e d a b i l i t y o f one person t o g i v e another something t h e l a t t e r wants.  T h i s c o u l d range from p e r s o n a l rewards such as  a f f e c t i o n o r regard, t o s t a t u s rewards such as marks f o r a u n i v e r s i t y student, t o m a t e r i a l rewards such as money.  Of  course, i t f o l l o w s t h a t the rewards must be p e r c e i v e d as important and d e s i r a b l e t o the person b e i n g i n f l u e n c e d .  Coercive  99 power i s t h e f l i p s i d e o f t h i s c o i n i n t h a t i t r e s t s on t h e a b i l i t y o f one t o p u n i s h t h e o t h e r f o r f a i l u r e t o comply. Coercion,  i n t h i s sense, c o u l d mean demotion, f i n e s ,  or even p h y s i c a l i n j u r y .  Again, t h e s t r e n g t h  disapproval,  and e f f e c t i v e n e s s  of c o e r c i v e power w i l l depend on how d i r e o r u n d e s i r a b l e t h e n e g a t i v e consequences t o be meted out appear t o t h e i n d i v i d u a l being influenced.  Homans (1974) emphasized t h e d i f f e r i n g  emotional r e a c t i o n s t o reward power and c o e r c i v e power,  noting  t h a t b e i n g rewarded i s u s u a l l y f e l t as a p o s i t i v e experience, whereas b e i n g coerced, f o r most people, c a l l s up f r u s t r a t i o n and anger. R e f e r e n t power i s based on t h e a b i l i t y t o i n f l u e n c e another t o a c t i n a d e s i r e d manner because t h e t a r g e t o f i n f l u e n c e  likes,  i d e n t i f i e s w i t h o r admires t h e powerholder and wants t o be l i k e t h a t person.  Thus i n d i v i d u a l s may w i l l i n g l y conform t o t h e  standards o f those they want t o be l i k e without any o v e r t or punishment from t h e r e f e r e n t i n d i v i d u a l s .  rewards  An attempt t o  employ t h i s power c o u l d be seen, f o r example, i n t h e use o f famous s p o r t s  f i g u r e s o r music i d o l s t o a d v e r t i s e p a r t i c u l a r  brands o f c l o t h i n g o r s o f t d r i n k s . operating  R e f e r e n t power i s a l s o  when a c h i l d behaves t o p l e a s e  s t u d e n t s adopt t h e s t y l e o f a r e s p e c t e d (1979) c a l l e d t h i s " c h a r i s m a t i c  an admired parent, o r mentor.  J u d i t h Bardwick  power," and d e s c r i b e d  i t as "a  q u a l i t y t h a t enables people t o c r e a t e a u t h o r i t y by v i r t u e o f t h e i r appeal, because they a r e responded t o "  (p.140).  E x p e r t power r e s t s i n t h e presumed p o s s e s s i o n knowledge o r s k i l l s .  of superior  Thus, many o f us would tend t o accept t h e  100 a d v i c e o f someone we we  see as having  a c q u i r e d e x p e r t i s e i n an  area  are i n t e r e s t e d i n or concerned about, p a r t i c u l a r l y i f i t i s an  area we  know l i t t l e about.  F i n a l l y , r o l e power or l e g i t i m a t e  power r e f e r s t o power accrued c u l t u r a l and as having students  s o c i a l norms.  through one's p o s i t i o n and based on  For example, a p r o f e s s o r  may  be seen  a l e g i t i m a t e r i g h t t o demand p a r t i c u l a r behaviour from i n the context of the academic programme, or i n d i v i d u a l s  might attempt t o demand p a r t i c u l a r behaviour from t h e i r spouses on the p r e t e x t t h a t t h i s i s what can l e g i t i m a t e l y be from a husband or w i f e .  expected  Whatever frame t h i s power i s e x e r c i s e d  w i t h i n , both p a r t i e s i n v o l v e d must acknowledge the r i g h t of person t o expect the d e s i r e d behaviour from the The  above views of power, although  one  other.  obviously r e f l e c t i n g  an  i n t e r a c t i o n a l element, emphasize "the i n t e n t i o n a l e x e r c i s e of individual's will  over o t h e r s "  ( L i p s , 1991,  p. 5 ) .  c o u l d even be seen as an a t t r i b u t e , or p o s s e s s i o n ,  one  Indeed, power of the  p o w e r f u l — a k i n d of magic wand which can be p i c k e d up and waved to  c a l l up  obedience.  David M c C l e l l a n d ' s  (1975) view of power c o u l d be seen as  somewhat o f a watershed between n o t i o n s of power as commodity power as i n t e r a c t i o n . impact."  M c C l e l l a n d d e f i n e s power as  although  toward  maturity  t h i s term i s not s p e c i f i c a l l y d e f i n e d , i t seems t o  involve f l e x i b i l i t y  employed i n the s e l e c t i o n of behaviour which  i s a p p r o p r i a t e t o s p e c i f i c circumstances others.  "having  H i s p o r t r a i t of power i s l e a d e r - c e n t r e d , but he a l s o  d i s c u s s e s the e x p r e s s i o n of power as a p r o g r e s s and,  and  and c o n s i d e r a t e  of  M c C l e l l a n d d e s c r i b e d the power s t y l e of dominance and  101 compulsion  o f o t h e r s as immature.  His preferred leadership style  i n v o l v e s t h e use o f i n f l u e n c e and e d u c a t i o n , r a t h e r than  force,  t o s e t group g o a l s and t o c r e a t e c o n f i d e n c e i n group members t h a t these g o a l s can be achieved. Janeway (1980), w h i l e acknowledging t h e dichotomy o f t h e "powerful and t h e weak," focused on power as a p r o c e s s which i n v o l v e s an a c t i v e , two-way r e l a t i o n s h i p . a s p e c t o f ongoing stations"  She sees power as "one  i n t e r a c t i o n s among human beings o f a l l  (p. 84). Viewed t h i s way, power i s p a r t o f t h e process  of any r e l a t i o n s h i p , and both p a r t i e s , even i f one dominates t h e other, p a r t i c i p a t e i n and c o n t r i b u t e t o t h a t p r o c e s s .  This  c o n s i d e r a t i o n acknowledges t h e c o n n e c t i o n between power and r e l a t e d n e s s , and Janeway p o i n t s t o t h e developmental  process of  growing from t h e dependence o f c h i l d h o o d t o a c r e a t i v e , interdepdendent  s e l f - s u f f i c i e n t m a t u r i t y , as a power-process i n  which and from which we a l l l e a r n as we grow.  This process  i n c l u d e s d e v e l o p i n g a s t r o n g , h e a l t h y sense o f s e l f , g a i n i n g knowledge about t h e world, and " l e a r n i n g how t o respond t o , p r e d i c t and c o n t r o l events, t o b a r g a i n , t o n e g o t i a t e w i t h o t h e r s , and t o r e b e l — a l l p a r t o f t h e process o f a c h i e v i n g power" 1991,  (Lips,  p. 4 ) . I n d e s c r i b i n g t h i s p r o c e s s , Janeway s t a t e s : When we t u r n from s p e c u l a t i o n on t h e o r i g i n s o f t h e human s p e c i e s t o everyday c h i l d - r e a r i n g p r a c t i c e s , we f i n d o u r s e l v e s once a g a i n l o o k i n g a t a p r o c e s s o f i n d i v i d u a t i o n t h a t depends on r e l a t e d n e s s , and which c a r r i e s each human c r e a t u r e from a c o n d i t i o n o f t o t a l powerlessness toward a g o a l - n o t always reached!-of reasonable c o n t r o l over t h e e x t e r n a l circumstances o f l i f e and comfortable, a f f e c t i o n a t e c o n n e c t i o n w i t h o t h e r human c r e a t u r e s . Whatever we know o f power begins here, as t h e s e l f becomes aware o f t h e l i n e t h a t s e p a r a t e s i t from t h e n o t - s e l f and then l e a r n s ways o f  102 d e a l i n g w i t h the n o t - s e l f , some more s u c c e s s f u l than o t h e r s , (p.28) In r e j e c t i n g s o c i a l psychology's power and  i n d i v i d u a l i s t i c view of  f o c u s i n g on r e l a t i o n a l views of t h i s phenomenon, r e c e n t  t h e o r i s t s see power, not as s t a t i c , but as d y n a m i c — a n i n e s c a p a b l e aspect of a l l human i n t e r a c t i o n Hartsock,  1983;  Janeway, 1980).  (Foucault,  1980;  According to Foucault:  Power i s employed and e x e r c i s e d through a n e t - l i k e o r g a n i z a t i o n . And not o n l y do i n d i v i d u a l s c i r c u l a t e between i t s t h r e a d s ; they are always i n the p o s i t i o n of s i m u l t a n e o u s l y undergoing and e x e r c i s i n g t h i s power. They are not o n l y i t s i n e r t or c o n s e n t i n g t a r g e t ; they are always a l s o the elements of i t s a r t i c u l a t i o n , (p. 98) S i n c e the mid-nineteenth  century, f e m i n i s t s have  generated  q u e s t i o n s and debate about the nature and use of power.  The  f e m i n i s t movement i t s e l f grows out of the b a s i c assumption t h a t power d i f f e r e n c e s e x i s t between men to  seek power without emphasizing  the v e i l of  and women.  "Feminist e f f o r t s  c o n t r o l over o t h e r s have l i f t e d  from some o t h e r f a c e s of power" ( L i p s , 1991,  p. 8 ) .  One  these f a c e s , d e s c r i b e d by Janeway (1980) as p a r t of her  e x p l o r a t i o n of the psychology  of response  t o o p p r e s s i o n i s the  power of r e s i s t a n c e , which she l a b e l s as one of the "powers of the weak." s t a t u s quo  Thus the weak can e x e r t power by q u e s t i o n i n g the i n s t e a d of meekly a c c e p t i n g i t .  They can  t o g e t h e r i n o r d e r t o b a r g a i n w i t h the powerful  join  f o r a more equal  arrangement.  Jean Lipman-Blumen (1984) p o i n t e d out t h a t "once  the powerless  recognize that t h e i r s e l f - i n t e r e s t l i e s  in joining  w i t h s i m i l a r l y d i s e n f r a n c h i s e d people, they can u n i t e t o demand change" (p. 9 ) .  Bardwick (1976) l a b e l l e d t h i s power  "compensatory m a n i p u l a t i o n " and d e s c r i b e d i t as "intended t o  103 diminish another s control, exercised 1  oneself"  (p. 140).  i n order t o p r o t e c t  T h i s power i s , o f course, i n f l u e n c e , but i t  cannot r e a l l y be seen as " i n f l u e n c e over;" Janeway names i t "power from under," and i t seems most concerned w i t h and  resisting  l i m i t i n g t h e power o f o t h e r s . Another o f t h e f a c e s o f power favoured by those who seek t o  move away from f o c u s i n g on power s o l e l y as domination over others,  i s t h e power t o a c h i e v e one's g o a l s — e i t h e r i n d i v i d u a l l y  or c o l l e c t i v e l y .  Jean Baker M i l l e r  (1986) d e s c r i b e s  t h i s as the  " c a p a c i t y t o implement," and she notes t h a t t h i s i s a f r e s h o u t l o o k on power i n t h a t i t assumes t h a t power may be f e l t p r i m a r i l y f o r the s e l f , without i m p l y i n g situation.  a  winner-loser  Thus, one of t h e important i m p l i c a t i o n s o f t h i s power  r e s t s i n t h e assumption t h a t i t i s p o s s i b l e t o a c t as an "empowered" person i n the world without dominating o r r e s t r i c t i n g 'others'  r i g h t s t o do t h e same.  i n v o l v e s a sense o f p e r s o n a l  In d i s c u s s i n g t h i s power, which  c a p a c i t y and p o t e n t i a l  effectiveness, M i l l e r states: In a b a s i c sense, t h e g r e a t e r t h e development o f each i n d i v i d u a l t h e more a b l e , more e f f e c t i v e , and l e s s needy of ' l i m i t i n g o r r e s t r i c t i n g o t h e r s she o r he w i l l be. (p. 116) "There i s a l s o p e r s o n a l  power, i n t h e sense o f  confidence  t h a t r e s i d e s i n o n e s e l f , t h a t comes from one's m a t u r i t y respect" according personal  (Bardwick, 1976, p.140).  and s e l f -  An important element of t h i s ,  t o Bardwick, i s t h a t t h e s t r e n g t h r e f l e c t e d i n t h i s power comes out of a sense o f s e l f which i s f i r m l y based  i n an acceptance o f o n e s e l f .  According  t o her, people who  e x p e r i e n c e t h i s i n t e r n a l power a r e "not dominated by the need t o  104 be l i k e d , not measuring themselves by o t h e r s  1  responses, they  not need t o conform t o or r e b e l a g a i n s t o t h e r s "  (Ibid).  do  This  d e s c r i p t i o n o f power seems s i m i l a r t o Maslow's (1968) concept of " s e l f - a c t u a l i z a t i o n , " and W i n n i c o t t ' s for creative l i v i n g . "  Miller  (1971) i d e a of "a c a p a c i t y  (1986) a l s o speaks of  " a u t h e n t i c i t y " as becoming/being o n e s e l f and the c r e a t i v i t y " which comes out of t h a t . of p e r s o n a l  c r e a t i v i t y as  She  "personal  describes t h i s  process  follows:  P e r s o n a l c r e a t i v i t y i s a p e r s o n a l process o f b r i n g i n g f o r t h a changing v i s i o n of o n e s e l f , and of o n e s e l f i n r e l a t i o n t o the world. Out of t h i s c r e a t i o n each person determines h e r / h i s next step and i s motivated t o take t h a t next step. T h i s v i s i o n must undergo repeated change and r e - c r e a t i o n . Through c h i l d h o o d and adulthood, too, t h e r e are i n e v i t a b l e p h y s i c a l changes as one grows and then ages. These demand a change i n one's r e l a t i o n t o the world. F u r t h e r , t h e r e are the continuous p s y c h o l o g i c a l changes t h a t l e a d t o more experience, more p e r c e p t i o n s , more emotions, and more thought. I t i s necessary t o i n t e g r a t e a l l these i n t o a coherent and c o n s t a n t l y e n l a r g i n g c o n c e p t i o n of one's l i f e , (p.Ill) Another f a c e t of p e r s o n a l power—one t h a t L i p s t o as l a r g e l y overlooked  i n f e m i n i s t d i s c u s s i o n , except by  interested i n feminist s p i r i t u a l i t y , (Starhawk, 1982)  (1991) p o i n t s  which focuses  those  i s "power from w i t h i n "  on an acceptance of the  innate  i n d i v i d u a l v a l u e of each person and which t r a n s l a t e s , i n knowing that value,  i n t o "an  inner strength."  L i k e some N a t i v e  Canadian  and American s p i r i t u a l p r a c t i c e s , nascent f e m i n i s t t h e o l o g i e s emphasize t h a t t h i s power has  i t s source i n the i n d i v i d u a l — n o t ,  as i n t r a d i t i o n a l Western r e l i g i o n , God.  i n an e x t e r n a l source such as  Power from w i t h i n comes from connection  e s s e n t i a l l e v e l and and w i t h the  i s nourished  environment.  w i t h s e l f on  through i n t e r a c t i o n w i t h  an others  105 Although f e m i n i s t d i a l o g u e power, i t has  has  added t o our p i c t u r e of  not managed t o r e s o l v e the ambivalence towards  power which, probably, the l e s s powerful members o f s o c i e t y have always e x p e r i e n c e d . h i g h l i g h t i n g , not ( L i p s , 1991,  Indeed, "the debates have succeeded o n l y i n  i n r e s o l v i n g , the uneasiness about power"  p. 10).  The  next s e c t i o n s of t h i s c h a p t e r examine  the psychology of women and women's o r i e n t a t i o n s / a t t i t u d e s t o power.  The  Psychology of Women and  Power  In examining power through the v a r i o u s  l e n s e s w i t h which i t  has been viewed, i t becomes apparent t h a t as t r a d i t i o n a l  concepts  of "power over" were broadened t o i n c l u d e i n t e r a c t i v e and i n t r a p e r s o n a l elements, power c o u l d take new  forms "and  a  d i s i n c l i n a t i o n toward dominance or a r e c o g n i t i o n o f one's f e e l i n g s of v u l n e r a b i l i t y and u n c e r t a i n t y need not weakness" ( L i p s , 1991, heretofore  ignored  p. 89).  Serious  own  imply  consideration  of  a s p e c t s of power have come out of a growing  awareness t h a t women's experience, which i s o f t e n d i f f e r e n t from men's, r e s u l t s i n a d i f f e r e n t o r i e n t a t i o n towards s o c i a l phenomena, and  a c o n s i d e r a t i o n of these o r i e n t a t i o n s  has  c o n t r i b u t e d t o a r e - v a l u i n g of q u a l i t i e s and c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s which are o f t e n a s s o c i a t e d w i t h f e m i n i n i t y women).  ( i n men  as w e l l as i n  T h e o r i s t s i n v o l v e d i n t h i s work have p o i n t e d  out  that  feminine q u a l i t i e s u s u a l l y seen as d i s a b i l i t i e s are o f t e n , i n reality,  strengths,  and  t h a t by i n c l u d i n g women's e x p e r i e n c e  and  106 o r i e n t a t i o n , we expand our understanding o f power, t o t h e b e n e f i t o f both sexes. C a r o l G i l l i g a n ' s (1982) work on women's moral development suggests t h a t developmental d i f f e r e n c e s between t h e sexes r e s u l t i n a l t e r n a t i v e conceptions of m a t u r i t y — w h i c h are not n e c e s s a r i l y i n f e r i o r t o t h e accepted d e f i n i t i o n s which had been based on observations has  o f male e x p e r i e n c e .  been d e s c r i b e d  The psychology o f women which  i n terms o f women's o r i e n t a t i o n toward  i n r e l a t i o n s h i p implied,  i n G i l l i g a n ' s mind, t h a t women b r i n g a  d i f f e r e n t p o i n t o f view and d i f f e r e n t p r i o r i t i e s t o t h e i r experience.  F o r t h e women i n v o l v e d i n h e r r e s e a r c h ,  d i f f e r e n c e s centered  being  life  these  around t h e importance o f care and  r e s p o n s i b i l i t y t o others w i t h i n r e l a t i o n s h i p as opposed t o i n d i v i d u a l r i g h t s , and around connectedness as opposed t o separation.  These d i f f e r e n c e s seem c o n s i s t e n t w i t h male emphasis  on companionate and i n s t r u m e n t a l  modes o f r e l a t i n g as d i f f e r e n t  from female emphasis on a f f i l i a t i o n  and connectedness found i n  studies of r e l a t i o n s h i p patterns within organizations 1978;  Hennig & J a r d i n , 1977; Kanter, 1977; R i g e r  (Eagley,  & Galligan,  1980). As noted above, M c C l e l l a n d  (1975) viewed power s t y l e s i n  terms o f m a t u r i t y / i m m a t u r i t y , and he a l s o p o i n t e d  t o the  developmental d i f f e r e n c e s i n women and men as l e a d i n g t o d i f f e r e n t power s t y l e s i n t h e mature i n d i v i d u a l . McClelland  saw t h e c o n s t r u c t i o n o f m a t u r i t y  interdependence, b u i l d i n g up r e s o u r c e s , Whereas r e s e a r c h  Like  Gilligan,  by women as " i n v o k i n g  and g i v i n g " (p. 96).  r e v e a l e d t h a t power f a n t a s i e s i n men o f t e n  107 r e v o l v e d around a s s e r t i o n and a g g r e s s i v e n e s s , i n women these f a n t a s i e s were concerned w i t h nurturance as s t r e n g t h . discussing nurturing  In  women's t r a d i t i o n a l approach towards power as and c a r i n g , M c C l e l l a n d  stated:  I t s h o u l d be emphasized, however, t h a t t h e r e i s a b s o l u t e l y no reason why a woman has t o o r should adopt t h i s l i f e s t y l e or why a man f o r t h a t matter should not adopt i t . My own b e l i e f i s t h a t t h e t r a d i t i o n a l male's single-minded, s p e c i a l i z e d a s s e r t i v e l i f e s t y l e i s f a r t o o dominant and t o o much v a l u e d i n s o - c a l l e d advanced s o c i e t i e s . Both women and men a r e drawn t o i t - t o f u l l - t i m e s p e c i a l i z e d c a r e e r s , f o r instance-because t h a t i s t h e o n l y way t o be f u l l y r e s p e c t e d i n contemporary Western s o c i e t y . The t r a d i t i o n a l male l i f e s t y l e has won out and e x e r t s an even s u b t l e r form o f o p p r e s s i o n on women who f e e l i n c r e a s i n g l y w o r t h l e s s i f they pursue t h e t r a d i t i o n a l feminine s o c i a l emotional r o l e r a t h e r than t h e male i n s t r u m e n t a l r o l e . . . I see no reason why more men c o l d not o r should not adopt such a r o l e a l s o . (p. 93) Jean Baker M i l l e r (1986) a l s o saw women's o r i e n t a t i o n toward power as d i f f e r i n g from t h e t r a d i t i o n a l male o r i e n t a t i o n .  Miller  focuses on women's p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n r e l a t i o n s h i p s o f dominance and  subordination i n her exploration  orientations.  She d i s t i n g u i s h e s ,  o f these d i f f e r i n g  here, between r e l a t i o n s h i p s o f  permanent i n e q u a l i t y as compared t o those o f temporary inequality—the parent/child  l a t t e r r e f e r r i n g t o r e l a t i o n s h i p s , such as  o r t e a c h e r / s t u d e n t , i n which power i s i d e a l l y used  i n s u p p o r t i n g and encouraging development which e v e n t u a l l y the d i s p a r i t y .  Relationships  ends  o f permanent i n e q u a l i t y , on t h e  o t h e r hand, use power t o m a i n t a i n dominance o f one group over another, and t o l e g i t i m i z e t h a t i n e q u a l i t y and i n c o r p o r a t e into society's  "guiding  it  concepts."  Focusing, i n t h i s way, on power i n e q u i t i e s , M i l l e r d e s c r i b e s the psychology o f women as coming out o f t h e i r p o s i t i o n s i n  108 r e l a t i o n s h i p s o f temporary and permanent i n e q u a l i t y .  She saw  women as dominant i n t e m p o r a r i l y unequal r e l a t i o n s h i p s (ex. mother/child)  and subordinate i n permanently unequal  r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h men.  These l a t t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s , she p o i n t s  out, a r e c o m p l i c a t e d by t h e i n t i m a t e s e x u a l and f a m i l i a l bonds between men and women. particularly  A c c o r d i n g t o M i l l e r , women thus have a  unique vantage p o i n t i n terms o f t h e i r  experience  and o b s e r v a t i o n s o f t h e p o t e n t i a l f o r care and r e s p o n s i b i l i t y w i t h i n human r e l a t i o n s h i p , as w e l l as t h e p o t e n t i a l f o r domination  and o p p r e s s i o n .  In Toward a New Psychology  (1986), M i l l e r a s s e r t e d a psychology  o f Women  o f power and m a t u r i t y which  r e c o g n i z e d t h a t s e p a r a t i o n does not d i s p l a c e t h e v a l u e o f care and r e s p o n s i b i l i t y i n r e l a t i o n s h i p s .  In d i s c u s s i n g women's  p e c u l i a r p o s i t i o n v i s - a - v i s power r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h i n t h e f a m i l y , she p o i n t e d out t h a t : What has not been r e c o g n i z e d i s t h a t t h i s p s y c h i c s t a r t i n g p o i n t c o n t a i n s t h e p o s s i b i l i t i e s f o r an e n t i r e l y d i f f e r e n t (and more advanced) approach t o l i v i n g and f u n c t i o n i n g - v e r y d i f f e r e n t , t h a t i s , from t h e approach f o s t e r e d by t h e dominant c u l t u r e . I n i t , a f f i l i a t i o n i s v a l u e d as h i g h l y as, or more h i g h l y than, self-enhancement. Moreover, i t a l l o w s f o r t h e emergence o f t h e t r u t h : t h a t f o r everyone-men as w e l l as women-individual development proceeds o n l y by means of c o n n e c t i o n , (p. 83) C o n s i s t e n t w i t h M i l l e r ' s p o s i t i o n , P e r c i v a l and P e r c i v a l (1986) found,  a c r o s s two s t u d i e s , t h a t women and men who were  a b l e t o d e f i n e themselve i n a n o n - o p p o s i t i o n a l w a y — i . e . i n c o r p o r a t e both connectedness t o o t h e r s o r empathy, and separateness  o r agency—were a b l e t o t r a n s c e n d t r a d i t i o n a l gender  c o n s t r u c t s and were s u p p o r t i v e o f e q u a l i t y f o r women. In b r i n g i n g t h e v o i c e s o f women out o f s i l e n c e and i n t o  109 t h e i r r e s e a r c h on human development and the psychology  of power,  and i n r e c o g n i z i n g t h a t women's o f t e n devalued q u a l i t i e s can seen,  be  i n f a c t , as s t r e n g t h e n i n g power's " a p p r o p r i a t e o p e r a t i o n "  (Miller,  1986,  p. 118), these t h e o r i s t s have made important  c o n n e c t i o n s between an e t h i c of c a r e and r e s p o n s i b i l i t y toward o t h e r s , on the one hand, and i n d i v i d u a l r i g h t s , on the o t h e r . Gilligan  (1982) p o i n t s t o the importance  t o the v o i c e s of both women and men  of l i s t e n i n g  carefully  and h e a r i n g the d i f f e r e n t  r e a l i t i e s of t h e i r l i v e s , so t h a t i n r e c o g n i z i n g d i f f e r i n g modes of s o c i a l experience and  i n t e r p r e t a t i o n , "we  complex r e n d i t i o n of human e x p e r i e n c e "  a r r i v e a t a more  (p. 174).  In p o i n t i n g t o  the i n e v i t a b l e c o n n e c t i o n s between the two d i s p a r a t e modes of e x p e r i e n c e , she s t a t e d : J u s t as the language of r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s p r o v i d e s a weblike imagery of r e l a t i o n s h i p s t o r e p l a c e a h i e r a r c h i c a l o r d e r i n g t h a t d i s s o l v e s w i t h the coming of e q u a l i t y , so the language o f r i g h t s u n d e r l i n e s the importance of i n c l u d i n g i n the network of c a r e not o n l y the o t h e r but a l s o the s e l f , (p. 173)  Women's A t t i t u d e s Toward Power Developmental a s p e c t s o f women's l i f e experience t h e i r o r i e n t a t i o n s and a t t i t u d e s toward power. Miller  affects  As Jean Baker  (1986) and o t h e r s have p o i n t e d out, the "womanly  s t r e n g t h s " r e f e r r e d t o above, come, not out of any  particular  s a i n t l i n e s s or h i g h e r awareness e x c l u s i v e t o women, but out o f the p e c u l i a r and sometimes p a i n f u l r e a l i t y of women's genderdefined s o c i a l i z a t i o n .  The emphasis on feminine q u a l i t i e s  p o s i t i v e and v a l u a b l e i s r e l a t i v e l y new  and c e r t a i n l y  not  as  110 u n i v e r s a l l y accepted, by men o r by women. p o i n t e d out i n 1975,  S i n c e , as M c C l e l l a n d  "sex r o l e t u r n s out t o be one o f t h e most  important determinants o f human behaviour"  (p. 81) and s i n c e  r e s e a r c h data, a t l e a s t up u n t i l t h a t time, had focused almost e x c l u s i v e l y on s t u d i e s o f males, t h e r e has been a tendency t o "regard male behaviour as t h e 'norm  1  and female behaviour as some  k i n d o f d e v i a t i o n from t h a t norm" ( I b i d ) .  T h i s has r e s u l t e d i n  women f e e l i n g devalued and, o f t e n , a c c e p t i n g t h e n o t i o n t h a t they are, indeed, l e s s v a l u a b l e and t h a t something  i s wrong w i t h t h e i r  f e e l i n g s o r behaviour. Women's  (and men's) s o c i a l i z a t i o n i n t h i s d i r e c t i o n begins,  Lipman-Blumen (1984) says, i n c h i l d h o o d , when boys and g i r l s a r e segregated i n s c h o o l — n o t on t h e b a s i s o f who they a r e o r what they can do, b u t on t h e b a s i s o f having been born male o r female. Whatever t h e boys do i s accorded more importance,  and thus,  l a c k i n g s o c i a l l y - v a l u e d r e s o u r c e s , women are, from t h e b e g i n n i n g seen as l e s s important and l e s s v a l u a b l e — b y males and by each other. A c c o r d i n g t o Gordon A l l p o r t  (1955), v i c t i m s o f p r e j u d i c e a r e  l i k e l y t o take on d e f e n s i v e modes o f behaviour; he d e s c r i b e d these as i n t r o p u n i t i v e and e x t r o p u n i t i v e ego-defenses.  Rawlings  and C a r t e r ' s (1977) a p p l i c a t i o n o f A l l p o r t ' s t h e o r y t o women i s c o n s i s t e n t w i t h Lipman-Blumen's (1984) work.  I n t r o p u n i t i v e ego-  defenses t u r n s o c i e t a l d e v a l u a t i o n o f women inward towards t h e s e l f and o t h e r women.  Thus women who m a n i f e s t i n t r o p u n i t i v e ego  defenses p r o t e c t themselves group,  by denying membership i n t h e i r own  sometimes by b e i n g c a r e f u l not t o "step out o f l i n e " o r t o  Ill a s s o c i a t e w i t h women who might be seen as " d e v i a n t "  i n terms o f  s o c i e t a l views o f accepted feminine behaviour o r i d e a s . women, t h e v e r y  F o r such  i d e a o f c l a i m i n g power f o r themselves by  a c t u a l i z i n g t h e i r p o t e n t i a l i n n o n - t r a d i t i o n a l ways, may be f e l t as i n t e n s e l y f r i g h t e n i n g , and they may r e s e n t o t h e r women who attempt t o do t h a t . Thus, w h i l e r e c e n t theory p a r t i c u l a r strengths  suggests t h a t women may b r i n g  t o bear on our understanding o f power, women  have t h e i r own p a r t i c u l a r problems w i t h power. p o i n t s out,  As M i l l e r  (1986)  f o r many women, power " i s almost a d i r t y word-in  somewhat t h e same way 'sex* has been" ( p. 115). g i r l s " d i d n ' t want any (sex)  i n the f i f t i e s ,  J u s t as " n i c e  " n i c e women" today  o f t e n shy away from t h e n o t i o n o f themselves as p o w e r f u l . Research suggests t h a t t h i s f e a r o f power r e s u l t s from t h e e x p e r i e n c e o f powerlessness ( L i p s , 1991). pointed  Bardwick (1979)  out t h a t "those without power a r e always p r e o c c u p i e d with  i t because they a r e always a f r a i d o f being v i c t i m s "  (p. 141), and  c e r t a i n l y women have experienced a s c r i b e d powerlessness i n every area. men  As numerous r e s e a r c h e r s  and t h e o r i s t s have p o i n t e d  out,  on t h e average possess more reward power, more c o e r c i v e  power, more r e f e r e n t power, more expert power and more l e g i t i m a t e power (Janeway, 1980; Johnson, 1976; Kahn, 1980; L i p s , 1991). A l s o , some men have used t h a t power t o dominate and c o n t r o l women i n ways t h a t women f i n d very  f r i g h t e n i n g , i n c l u d i n g threatened o r  a c t u a l p h y s i c a l v i o l e n c e o r abuse ( B a k e r - M i l l e r , 1986; Kahn, 1980;  L i p s , 1991; Herman, 1979).  Thus, women's use o f t h e i r own  power, i n t h e i r own i n t e r e s t , sometimes b r i n g s a s e v e r e l y  112 n e g a t i v e r e a c t i o n from men and,  f o r some women, t h i s knowledge i s  a d e t e r r e n t t o a c t i n g i n powerful ways ( B a k e r - M i l l e r ,  1986).  T h i s p e r s o n a l understanding o f powerlessness, combined with women's emphasis on c a r e and r e s p o n s i b i l i t y w i t h i n may  a l s o s e n s i t i z e women t o t h e misuse  o f power, i n t h a t they may  shy away from success a t t h e expense o f another's (Gilligan,  1987).  relationship,  failure  I f a woman sees t h e use o f power as l i k e l y t o  h u r t another person, i n t e r f e r e w i t h another's r i g h t s , o r e n t a i l the l o s s o f empathy f o r o t h e r s , then she may "construe t h e c o n f l i c t between f e m i n i n i t y and adulthood as a moral (Gilligan,  1982, p. 97).  problem"  Janeway (1982) speaks o f t h e  c o n t r a d i c t i o n , f o r women, "between a l i m i t i n g power t o compel and a l i b e r a t i n g power t o a c t " (p. 87).  She asks "how dare we t r u s t  our own a s p i r a t i o n s i f . . . a m b i t i o n f o r o n e s e l f can be transmuted i n t h e space o f a b r e a t h i n t o domination over o t h e r s ? " (p.88)  Of  course, a q u e s t i o n i n g o f t r a d i t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n s o f success and power may, as p o i n t e d out above, b e n e f i t both women and men. Taken t o extremes,  however, a f e a r o f power may l i m i t women's  p e r c e p t i o n s o f t h e i r own p o t e n t i a l and b l o c k t h e i r a b i l i t y t o move new understandings o f power i n t o a c t i o n . Gilligan  (1982) a l s o d i s c u s s e s power as c h o i c e and she  p o i n t s out t h a t i n o r d e r t o be w i l l i n g t o make c h o i c e s , one must be w i l l i n g t o accept r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r t h e c h o i c e s one makes. Women who experience l a c k o f power and a need t o depend on men f o r p r o t e c t i o n and support may have grave f e a r s around b e i n g r e s p o n s i b l e f o r making t h e i r own c h o i c e s .  These women may make  the c h o i c e t o t r a d e t h e i r power as decision-makers f o r t h e  113 a p p r o v a l o r support they b e l i e v e they need.  G i l l i g a n described  t h i s p r o c e s s i n t h e f o l l o w i n g words: To t h e e x t e n t t h a t women p e r c e i v e themselves as having no c h o i c e , they c o r r e s p o n d i n g l y excuse themselves from t h e r e s p o n s i b i l i t y that decision e n t a i l s . C h i l d l i k e i n the v u l n e r a b i l i t y o f t h e i r dependence and consequent f e a r o f abandonment, they c l a i m t o wish o n l y t o p l e a s e , but i n r e t u r n f o r t h e i r goodness they expect t o be l o v e d and cared f o r . (p. 67) Paula Caplan  (1981) a l s o d i s c u s s e d women's d i f f i c u l t y i n  d e a l i n g w i t h t h e freedom t o choose.  She p o i n t e d out t h a t many  t r a d i t i o n a l women never r e a l l y make c h o i c e s about t h e i r directions,  except t o choose who they would marry.  life  The o t h e r  c h o i c e s were made f o r them—by p a r e n t s , by s o c i e t y , and l a t e r by t h e i r husbands.  In h e r o p i n i o n , women a r e o f t e n made t o f e e l  t h a t they r e a l l y have no c h o i c e s and t h a t , a t any r a t e , husbands a r e f a r b e t t e r equipped  "their  t o make c h o i c e s and d e c i s i o n s "  (p. 154). Caplan goes on t o say: I f we never make our own c h o i c e s and d e c i s i o n s , we never have t o grow, and we f i n d i t hard t o know what we want, how we would choose i f i t were up t o us. (Ibid) Thus, i n s p i t e  o f t h e growing body o f r e s e a r c h and t h e o r y  which i s s l o w i n g changing  c u l t u r a l norms and v a l u e s ,  gender s o c i a l i z a t i o n and gender d e f i n i t i o n s powerful.  are s t i l l  traditional very  I t seems t h a t both these t h i n g s — t h e changing  and t h e t r a d i t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n s expected t o b e — w i l l time t o come.  focii,  o f what we a r e allowed and  a f f e c t women's c o n c e p t i o n s o f power f o r some  114 B.  Discussion  The p r e c e d i n g s e c t i o n e x p l o r e d some o f t h e r e l e v a n t l i t e r a t u r e on t h e psychology o f power as i t r e l a t e s t o women's experience.  The f o l l o w i n g d i s c u s s i o n examines t h e r e s e a r c h  f i n d i n g s o f t h i s study  (see Chapter  IV) i n t h e l i g h t o f t h a t  l i t e r a t u r e , w i t h a view t o s e e i n g how t h e r e s e a r c h data and t h e l i t e r a t u r e might i l l u m i n a t e one another. I t focuses, f i r s t , on understandings  o f t h e nature o f p o w e r — a s i l l u s t r a t e d through t h e  outcome space and, second,  on women's o r i e n t a t i o n and a t t i t u d e s  toward power.  Women's Understandings The respondents  o f t h e Nature o f Power  i n t h i s study h o l d s i x q u a l i t a t i v e l y  d i f f e r e n t c o n c e p t i o n s o f power. integrity/entitlement, self-determination,  These can be expressed as (a)  (b) e x p r e s s i n g i n t e g r i t y / c o n g r u e n c e , (c)  (d) agency/competence,  s t a n d i n g , and (f) i n f l u e n c e .  (e) r e s p e c t e d  Before examining  N  each c o n c e p t i o n  i n d i v i d u a l l y , t h i s section discusses findings related t o a l l conceptions. The  f i r s t t h r e a d which weaves i t s way through a l l t h e  c o n c e p t i o n s i s a view o f power as a dynamic p r o c e s s , r a t h e r than a s t a t i c phenomenon.  T h i s l e a d s d i r e c t l y t o t h e second  which appears  as somewhat o f a theme throughout  that i s that  r a t h e r than being seen as an i n d i v i d u a l  finding  t h e data, and right,  "which one i s a b l e t o possess l i k e a commodity" ( F o u c a u l t , 1980, p. 88), power i s seen as r e l a t i o n a l — a n undeniable aspect o f a l l  115 human i n t e r a c t i o n .  Over and over a g a i n , as t h e respondents  s t r u g g l e d t o a r t i c u l a t e t h e i r experience o f power, interdependence among t h e " a c t o r s " was taken i n t o account.  This  view, o f course, i s c o n s i s t e n t w i t h f e m i n i s t t h e o r y which emphasizes women's i n t e r - c o n n e c t e d n e s s w i t h i n ( B a k e r - M i l l e r , 1986; G i l l i g a n ,  1982; L i p s ,  relationships  1991).  That i s not t o c l a i m t h a t t h e respondents  unilaterally  d e f i n e d power i n t h i s way i n each and every i n s t a n c e o f d e s c r i b i n g t h e i r experiences.  Indeed, t h e range o f v a r i a t i o n i n  terms o f d i r e c t e d n e s s o f thought w i t h i n c o n c e p t i o n s m i r r o r s , t o some degree, t h e movement i n psychology's view o f power, as d e s c r i b e d above, and t h a t , o f course, i s t o be expected.  But,  o f t e n , even when a woman acknowledged t h e o p e r a t i o n o f power based on i n d i v i d u a l r i g h t s ,  from j u s t under t h e s u r f a c e o f h e r  d e s c r i p t i o n would emerge t h e themes o f interdependence, embeddedness w i t h i n r e l a t i o n s h i p , c o n n e c t i o n w i t h o t h e r s . I n f l u e n c e was, most o f t e n , seen as mutual i n f l u e n c e ;  self-  d e t e r m i n a t i o n was d e s c r i b e d as b e i n g a b l e t o c o n t r o l one's environment  i n a way " t h a t works f o r you and f o r o t h e r people"  (B-42); p e r s o n a l i n t e g r i t y , although always  i n v o l v i n g an inward  focus, a l s o n e c e s s a r i l y i n v o l v e d t h e i n t e r n a l i z a t i o n o f i n t e r connectedness.  F o r example, an aspect o f p e r s o n a l i n t e g r a t i o n ,  i n some cases was an owning o f one's h i s t o r y as a w o m a n — e i t h e r a connectedness  w i t h f a m i l y members, such as mothers and  grandmothers,  o r a connectedness  w i t h women as c o n t r i b u t o r s  through t h e ages. Another aspect o f t h e dynamic i n t e r a c t i v e nature o f power  116 d e s c r i b e d by the respondents i n v o l v e d a view o f power as a productive  "snowballing"  process,  which b u i l t upon i t s e l f and  a k i n d o f "system of energy"  i n c r e a s e d , not j u s t f o r the  of the p r o c e s s , but f o r a l l the p a r t i e s i n v o l v e d .  initiator  One  respondent, f o r i n s t a n c e , d e s c r i b e d the i n s t r u c t o r ' s power as  "an  i n n e r s t r e n g t h , " which, as she acted i t out i n the world, f a c i l i t a t e d power f o r the c o u n s e l l o r s - i n - t r a i n i n g ; i n n o t i n g development of t h i s i n n e r s t r e n g t h w i t h i n her students, s u p e r v i s o r ' s own reaction. back and  The  power g r e w — a n d so on,  the  the  i n a k i n d of c h a i n  respondent d e s c r i b e d t h i s system as a " f l o w i n g  f o r t h of power" (H-28). Another respondent spoke of  power as: ..the energy of the i n t e r a c t i o n t h a t ' s happening.... and t h a t energy f a c i l i t a t e s more i n t e r a c t i o n , and i t f a c i l i t a t e s . . . u h m . . . t h a t f a c i l i t a t e s you..uhm..again, coming up w i t h more p e r s o n a l resources than you knew t h a t you had....by me f e e l i n g . . . h e r power..or her a b i l i t y t o e x e r t h e r s e l f t o say what she t h i n k s w e l l , I ' l l j u s t leave i t a t that...I'm understanding her, so she f e e l s v a l i d a t e d and I t h i n k t h a t can e n e r g i z e her, and she can come up with more things... I n t e r v i e w e r : So when you you f e e l more powerful?  say i t e n e r g i z e s you,  Yeah, I f e e l more powerful, I n t e r v i e w e r : And  too, and  I  do you mean  can..  then she f e e l s more powerful?  Yeah..(G-42) A v e r y i n t e r e s t i n g product  of power d e s c r i b e d t h i s way  the p o s s i b i l i t y of a k i n d of " e q u a l i z a t i o n " of power. if  i t s t a r t s o f f with one person b e i n g more powerful,  is  Thus, even because of  s u p e r i o r knowledge, or r o l e , f o r i n s t a n c e , i n the i n t e r a c t i o n power begins  t o equal out.  The  the  respondent quoted above went on  117 t o d e s c r i b e t h i s f e a t u r e of the p r o c e s s : But what i t comes down t o , too, i s one of the key p o i n t s , I t h i n k . . a n d t h a t i s . . i s that..even though i t may have began..with an unequal....uhm..how am I going t o put t h i s ? . . . . i t c o u l d be unequal power because she might be i n a more powerful p o s i t i o n than I am....it becomes more o f an equal k i n d o f an i n t e r a c t i o n even though..she's more knowledgeable?..Because....uhm..I'm ..I'm e x e r t i n g power i n a d i f f e r e n t k i n d of way..back t o her. We're e x e r t i n g power on each o t h e r . . . . b u t i t ' s m o b i l i z i n g both o f us, it's..uhm..somehow both of us c o u l d come up w i t h r e s o u r c e s t h a t s o r t o f . . c o n t r i b u t e t o . . (G-43) I t i s i n t e r e s t i n g t o note, although the quoted data comes out of extended  d e s c r i p t i o n s of two  qualitatively  different  c o n c e p t i o n s of power (the f i r s t — p o w e r as e x p r e s s i n g i n t e g r i t y ; the second—power as i n f l u e n c e ) , the s i m i l a r i t i e s i n the process and end product of power.  The e x e r c i s e of power, i n these cases,  i s not o n l y seen as dynamic, i n t e r a c t i v e and embedded i n connectedness,  but a l s o as l i b e r a t i n g — a v e r y d i f f e r e n t  focus  from a t r a d i t i o n a l view of power as dominance over o t h e r s !  The S i x Conceptions  Conception One:  as Views of Power  Power as  Integrity  T h i s c o n c e p t i o n of power as knowing o n e s e l f and c o m f o r t a b l e w i t h o n e s e l f i s o f t e n d e s c r i b e d , by the as an " i n n e r s t r e n g t h " or as " i n n e r power."  being respondents,  As noted above, i t  i n v o l v e s not o n l y a s e l f - c o n n e c t e d n e s s , but a l s o the connectedness  o f b e i n g r e l a t e d t o o t h e r s and i n t e g r a t i n g t h a t  connectedness  i n t o one's s e l f - c o n c e p t .  I t seems t h a t t h i s  c o n c e p t i o n i s most c l o s e l y r e l a t e d t o f e m i n i s t p e r c e p t i o n s of p e r s o n a l power c o n s i s t e n t w i t h Bardwick*s (1976) d e s c r i p t i o n of  118 p e r s o n a l power; t h e s t r e n g t h and c o n f i d e n c e  r e f l e c t e d i n the  o p e r a t i o n o f t h i s power r e s t s on a f o u n d a t i o n  of self-acceptance.  My sense was t h a t some respondents seemed t o be  attempting  t o a r t i c u l a t e the " e s s e n t i a l l e v e l " s e l f - c o n n e c t i o n o f those  who  d i s c u s s p e r s o n a l power i n t h e framework o f f e m i n i s t s p i r i t u a l i t y . In one case,  f o r i n s t a n c e , t h e speaker used t h e word " s o u l " as a  synonym f o r power; i n another, she r e f e r r e d t o h e r s e l f as " s p i r i t , " and went on t o d e s c r i b e t h a t as " s p i r i t energy....I see i t as self-grounded..not  i n t h e sense o f  t r a n s p e r s o n a l . . . I don't  see t h i s . . . coming..from o u t s i d e o n e s e l f . . . I see i t as growing out of oneself"  (B-61).  Although none o f t h e respondents  s p e c i f i c a l l y d i s c u s s e d modern f e m i n i s t s p i r i t u a l i t y ,  i t is  i n t e r e s t i n g t o note t h a t no one d i s c u s s e d power as coming out of a t r a d i t i o n a l s p i r i t u a l path o r b e l i e f , such as C h r i s t i a n i t y , which would f i n d i t s power i n an e x t e r n a l source.  Conception l a ,  power as e n t i t l e m e n t , a l s o seems, t o me, t o be somewhat r e l a t e d t o t h e "power from w i t h i n " which emphasizes t h e i n n a t e v a l u e o f each  Conception  individual  individual.  Two:  Power i s E x p r e s s i n g  Personal I n t e g r i t y  Women h o l d i n g t h i s conception were concerned w i t h themselves h o n e s t l y  i n t h e world.  expressing  Sometimes t h e i r a c t e d out o r  spoken statements o f b e i n g i n v o l v e a s s e r t i v e n e s s , but always with the i n t e n t i o n o f s t a n d i n g up f o r t h e i r i n n e r t r u t h o r t r u e t o themselves.  I t b r i n g s t o mind M i l l e r ' s  remaining  (1986) view o f  p e r s o n a l power as " a u t h e n t i c i t y , " which she d e f i n e d as i n d i v i d u a l s ' a b i l i t y t o a c t "on t h e b a s i s o f t h e i r  own  119 p e r c e p t i o n s and e v a l u a t i o n s . . . t o a c t and r e a c t out o f t h e i r own being"  (p. 113). M i l l e r p o i n t s out t h a t h i g h l y educated o r  accomplished  women may a l r e a d y have t r a v e l l e d a l o n g way i n  c r e a t i n g a u t h e n t i c l i v e s f o r themselves, but she u n d e r l i n e s t h e r i s k t h a t such behaviour act  may e n t a i l f o r many women.  out t h e i r a u t h e n t i c i t y , women must possess  I n order t o  a strong  c o n v i c t i o n o f t h e i r own worth and o f t h e i r own r i g h t t o s e l f development One  ( c f . conception  l a : power i s a sense o f e n t i t l e m e n t ) .  respondent, i n e x p r e s s i n g h e r c o n v i c t i o n o f t h e need f o r  a c t i n g out p e r s o n a l i n t e g r i t y , captured much o f t h i s .  She s a i d :  I t h i n k my l i f e . . i s . . c e r t a i n l y an example and I . . I t h i n k as are t h e l i v e o f many women. We've spent so much o f our l i v e s . . . d o i n g what other people wanted.<saying t h e r i g h t t h i n g , and being a p p r o p r i a t e and..speaking i n t u r n , o r . . s p e a k i n g q u i e t l y when you m i g h t . . r a t h e r say your p i e c e . . a n d . . 1 v e c e r t a i n l y come t o a p o i n t i n my l i f e where..I'm not going t o l i v e with t h a t any more! Even i f i t means..taking a r i s k and f a c i n g t h e music..which, o f t e n I do...(F-52) 1  T h i s c o n c e p t i o n a l s o seems t o be r e l a t e d t o t h e f e m i n i s t view o f p e r s o n a l power.  I n r e a l l y b e i n g congruent i n t h e w o r l d —  i n a c t i n g out o f a s e l f - a c c e p t i n g sense o f s e l f — t h e transcends to  t h e domination o f "the need t o be l i k e d . . . t o conform  or rebel against others"  Conception  Three:  (Bardwick, 1976, p. 140).  Power i s S e l f - D e t e r m i n a t i o n  This conception f e m i n i s t conceptions is  actor  i s , perhaps, most c l o s e l y r e l a t e d t o o f power as t h e c a p a c i t y t o implement.  i n t e r e s t i n g t o note t h e d i f f e r e n c e between t h i s  It  conception—  which sees power as t h e c a p a c i t y t o have impact on one's own l i f e and  on t h e environment, t h e awareness o f c h o i c e s i n l i f e , and  120 responsibility autonomy.  f o r o n e s e l f — a n d power as  Rather than b e i n g based  t h i s c o n c e p t i o n takes i n t o account, oneself but a l s o r e s p o n s i b i l i t y  traditionally-defined  s o l e l y on i n d i v i d u a l  rights,  not o n l y r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r  f o r o t h e r s . One respondent, f o r  example, d e s c r i b e d c o n c e p t i o n t h r e e a s : " (Power i s ) . , b e i n g a b l e . . t o . . u h . . c o n t r o l your environment.... i n a way t h a t . . t h a t works f o r you and f o r o t h e r people"  (B-42).  T h i s b r i n g s t o mind  the c a u t i o n a r y words o f Jean Baker M i l l e r : ... i t i s c e r t a i n l y o p p r e s s i v e f o r women t o be dependent e c o n o m i c a l l y , p o l i t i c a l l y , s o c i a l l y , and p s y c h o l o g i c a l l y . However, t h e simple o p p o s i t e , t o be what i s c a l l e d 'independent' i n t h e dominant group c o n c e p t i o n o f t h a t term, may be a s p u r i o u s g o a l . Perhaps t h e r e a r e b e t t e r g o a l s than 'independence' as t h a t word has been d e f i n e d . Or r a t h e r , t h e r e may e x i s t b e t t e r c o n d i t i o n s , which t h e word i t s e l f tends t o deny: f o r example, f e e l i n g e f f e c t i v e and f r e e along w i t h f e e l i n g i n t e n s e connections w i t h o t h e r people. (1986, p. 119)  Conception  4:  Power i s Agency/Competence  Again, t h i s c o n c e p t i o n focuses on power as t h e a b i l i t y t o a c h i e v e one's g o a l s — w i t h o u t  i m p l y i n g t h e need t o "win o u t " over  o t h e r s — i n t h e b a s i c sense o f g a i n f u l l y u t i l i z i n g p e r s o n a l resources.  One respondent  to the f u l l e s t " job"  (B-59).  expressed t h i s as " u s i n g your  ability  A t times, t h i s might mean "doing a good  o r "being s k i l l f u l . "  A variation  on t h i s , however, c o u l d  i n v o l v e r e a l l y doing one's best, no matter what t h e outcome, o r s u r v i v i n g an o r d e a l and coming out o f i t w i t h some l e a r n i n g o r p e r s o n a l g r o w t h — e v e n i f t h e process i t s e l f was unpleasant. is interesting  It  t o note, t h a t i n e x p r e s s i n g power i n t h i s way,  many respondents  still  focused on a theme o f r e s p o n s i b i l i t y  121 within relationship.  T h i s i s how one woman a r t i c u l a t e d t h a t :  I c o u l d be r e l i e d upon, and she saw me as a r e l i a b l e , r e s p o n s i b l e person who would g e t t h e job done..But g u e s s . . I . . I see..power i n t h a t . A person i s powerful i f they are r e l i a b l e and r e s p o n s i b l e and g e t t h e j o b done. (E-56)  Conception  5:  Power i s Respected  Standing  In t h i s study, many o f t h e women who expressed  a view o f  power as r e s p e c t e d s t a n d i n g focused on themselves o r o t h e r s i n comparison t o o t h e r s i n t h e sense o f t h e i r s t a n d i n g i n t h e group. T h i s aspect o f c o n c e p t i o n 5 i s i n t e r e s t i n g i n t h a t i t appears t o be, w i t h t h e e x c e p t i o n o f t h e " t r a d i t i o n a l " p o l e o f c o n c e p t i o n 6, the most c l o s e l y r e l a t e d , o f t h e s i x c o n c e p t i o n s , t o t r a d i t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n s o f power.  Although  d e s c r i p t i o n s o f t h e c o n c e p t i o n do  not r e v e a l "power over" themes, they do d e s c r i b e power as a h i e r a r c h i c a l s t r u c t u r e — " a k i n d o f h i e r a r c h y o f power"  (E-68),  and they p o i n t out t h a t people low i n t h e h i e r a r c h y a r e a p t t o f e e l poor s e l f - e s t e e m , as a r e s u l t .  Respondents who spoke o f  power as a h i e r a r c h i c a l s t r u c t u r e e i t h e r warned a g a i n s t i t s o p e r a t i o n as being disempowering f o r those on t h e bottom rungs o f the l a d d e r , and/or they expressed c o n c e i v i n g o f power t h a t way.  d i s t r e s s t h a t they were  One i n t e r v i e w exchange went as  follows: (Very s o f t l y ) Gee..I guess I have l e v e l s o f powerful i n our c l i n i c . Interviewer:  people  You look d i s t u r b e d by t h a t . .  O h . . d i s t r e s s e d . . I am d i s t r e s s e d . . . . w e l l , i t ' s t h a t . . y o u know..one o f a group..and I . . . I don't l i k e t o see t h i n g s i n h i e r a r c h i e s . . . B u t . . . 1 have t o admit t h a t I guess I do. (E-66)  122 A l s o , although  not a l l respondents had t h i s p e r s p e c t i v e on  power as r e s p e c t e d s t a n d i n g , many d e s c r i b e d power here as an o b j e c t o r "commodity" which c o u l d be " g i v e n " o r "taken" others—another  Conception  traditional  focus.  6: Power i s I n f l u e n c i n g Others  Power i s d e s c r i b e d here as i n f l u e n c i n g o r having others.  from  This conception  impact on  c o u l d be seen as b i p o l a r i n terms o f t h e  i n t e n t o r purpose o f power.  On t h e one hand, respondents  acknowledged t h e e x i s t e n c e o f power as "power over" o t h e r s with a goal of using c o n t r o l , coercion, or manipulative make p e r s o n a l g a i n s without of others.  behaviour t o  c o n s i d e r i n g o r c a r i n g about t h e needs  T h i s p o l e o f power as i n f l u e n c e appears t o be  c o n s i s t e n t w i t h t r a d i t i o n a l views o f power as c o n t r o l and t h e a b i l i t y t o g e t t i n g t h e t a r g e t s o f power t o do what t h e powerholder wants them t o do. The  o p p o s i t e p o l e o f power as i n f l u e n c e i n v o l v e s u s i n g power  to b e n e f i t o t h e r s — a s empowering. to  i n teaching, nurturing,  facilitating,  Power d e s c r i b e d i n t h i s way seemed c l o s e l y r e l a t e d  f e m i n i s t i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s o f power i n s e v e r a l ways.  First,  respondents o f t e n s t r e s s e d t h i s type o f i n f l u e n c e as bedded i n r e l a t e d n e s s i n t h e sense o f i n v o l v i n g care and r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r others.  Second, i n f l u e n c e i n t h e sense o f n u r t u r i n g o r  f a c i l i t a t i n g o t h e r s , h e l d i n i t s e l f t h e p r o b a b i l i t y o f becoming a dynamic p r o c e s s  o f t h e type o f mutual i n f l u e n c e d e s c r i b e d above,  where t h e b e g i n n i n g process,  power imbalance o f t e n equals  and i n which both  out i n t h e  (or a l l ) a c t o r s n o u r i s h and  123 facilitate  one another's power.  Women's O r i e n t a t i o n and A t t i t u d e s t o Power I t i s important t o note here t h a t a r e s e a r c h study o f t h i s type f o c u s s e s on d e s c r i p t i o n and does not p u r p o r t t o make i n f e r e n c e s which compare women's c o n c e p t i o n s o r understandings w i t h men's.  I t i s concerned  c o n c e p t i o n s o f power and,  s o l e l y w i t h d e s c r i b i n g women's  i n p a r t i c u l a r , t h e c o n c e p t i o n s h e l d by  members o f t h e p a r t i c u l a r all-woman group which v o l u n t e e r e d t o p a r t i c i p a t e i n t h i s research.  The l i t e r a t u r e which focuses on  women's o r i e n t a t i o n s t o power, however, compares and c o n t r a s t s women's e x p e r i e n c e t o men's. F i r s t , as d i s c u s s e d i n more d e t a i l above, t h e r e s e a r c h data here appears  c o n s i s t e n t , f o r t h e most p a r t , w i t h C a r o l G i l l i g a n ' s  moral development t h e o r y which p o r t r a y s women approaching  power  i s s u e s through a concern w i t h c a r e and r e s p o n s i b i l i t y w i t h i n relationship.  Thus, l o v e , c o n n e c t i o n and interdependence  seen, by t h e respondents  a r e not  i n t h i s study, as a n t i t h e s e s t o power.  Second, t h e f i n d i n g s a r e c o n s i s t e n t w i t h David M c C l e l l a n d ' s (1975) s i m i l a r p o r t r a y a l o f women's o r i e n t a t i o n t o power b e i n g based  i n interdependence,  n u r t u r i n g and g i v i n g .  T h i r d , t h e r e a l s o appears Miller's  t o be some support f o r Jean Baker  (1986) t h e s i s t h a t women approach power from a "care and  r e s p o n s i b i l i t y " o r i e n t a t i o n , coming out o f t h e i r e x p e r i e n c e s w i t h i n f a m i l y systems where they  particular  participate  i n t i m a t e l y both i n r e l a t i o n s h i p s o f permanent i n e q u a l i t y and r e l a t i o n s h i p s o f temporary  inequality.  124 Most respondents d e s c r i b e d themselves  as p r e p a r i n g f o r a l i f e  p r o f e s s i o n focused on "empowering women," and many o f them were aware o f coming t o t h i s out o f t h e i r own e x p e r i e n c e o f powerlessness  i n t h e world—sometimes powerlessness  had e x p e r i e n c e d i n t h e i r own f a m i l i e s , i n t h e i r w i t h husbands.  which they  relationships  As c o u n s e l l o r s and t e a c h e r s , however, they were  most i n t e r e s t e d i n f a c i l i t a t i n g power i n t e r a c t i o n s which would l e a d t o i n c r e a s e d power f o r those who s t a r t e d o f f w i t h l e s s than them, and they acknowledged t h a t , i n doing t h i s , they s t a r t e d a dynamic p r o c e s s which l e d t o i n c r e a s e d power f o r them as w e l l as f o r t h e one they were f a c i l i t a t i n g . Respondents' a t t i t u d e s t o power were mixed, and t h e g o a l o r purpose  o f power was t h e d e c i s i v e f a c t o r here.  p a r t , women expressed themselves  F o r t h e most  as c o m f o r t a b l e w i t h power which  was u t i l i z e d out o f a d e s i r e t o somehow h e l p o r support individual.  another  On t h e o t h e r hand, they f e l t extremely r e l u c t a n t t o  p a r t i c i p a t e i n power which had, as i t s g o a l , t h e c o n t r o l o r m a n i p u l a t i o n o f another f o r " s e l f i s h " purposes. statement  The f o l l o w i n g  i s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f respondents' a t t i t u d e s about  this:  I t depends on how t h e power i s used...that's t h e b i g thing...If i t ' s forf a c i l i t a t i v e , beneficial purposes....then, I'm f i n e with i t . But i f i t ' s t h a t overpowering, m a n i p u l a t i v e , c o n t r o l l i n g s t u f f . . . I don't want t o have a n y t h i n g t o do w i t h i t . . . t h o u g h I know i t goes on a l l t h e time. (E-61) T h i s concern with the g o a l o f power, and t h e respondent's emphasis t h a t power use i s p o s i t i v e o n l y i n s o f a r as i t takes care and connectedness  w i t h i n r e l a t i o n s h i p i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n was  expressed r e p e a t e d l y and s t r o n g l y and i s c o n s i s t e n t w i t h t h e  125 f e m i n i s t l i t e r a t u r e on women's approaches and a t t i t u d e s  toward  power ( B a k e r - M i l l e r , 1986; G i l l i g a n , 1982; Janeway, 1980; L i p s , 1991) . Some respondents expressed extreme d i s c o m f o r t w i t h t h e idea of s e e i n g themselves o r p r o j e c t i n g themselves as p o w e r f u l . One o f t h e s e women s t a t e d t h a t she was w i l l i n g t o c a l l h e r s e l f " s t r o n g , " but not p o w e r f u l .  "To me,  i t ' s (power) a s c a r y word. I r e a l l y  much p r e f e r t o use t h e word s t r e n g t h . . l i k e t h e i n n e r s t r e n g t h , but I know t h e r e i s power out t h e r e , t o o " (E-37). She went on t o say, " I guess...the c o n n o t a t i o n . . t h a t • s s c a r y t o me,  i s t h e whole  f e e l i n g o f . . b e i n g power... f e e l i n g powerless" (E-38).  Consistent  with Lips*  (1991) a s s e r t i o n t h a t f e a r o f power comes out o f the  e x p e r i e n c e o f powerlessness, many of t h e respondents c i t e d own powerlessness as t h e experience out o f which they power—in  their  approach  terms o f both t h e i r a v e r s i o n t o power and t h e i r wish t o  work towards empowering women i n t h e world.  In d i s c u s s i n g  women's a t t i t u d e s toward power, one respondent noted t h a t , "when women f e e l powerless they a r e r e a l l y nervous about p o w e r — t h e y want t o back away from i t " (C-47). Another a s p e c t t o t h i s expressed f e a r o f power was r e v e a l e d by women who f e l t t h e i r own powerfulness a l i e n a t e d them from o t h e r women.  One respondent expressed h e r dilemma t h i s  way:  I t ' s s t r a n g e t o me, because I do f e e l v e r y p o w e r f u l . , and i t ' s taken me y e a r s t o g e t t h a t . And I want t h a t so much f o r o t h e r women...but my power w i l l o f t e n i n t i m i d a t e o t h e r women..and make them d i s l i k e me..which h u r t s me a l o t . (C-8) Although t h i s was not expressed as a g e n e r a l theme by respondents, one woman spoke of b e i n g a f r a i d t h a t i f she was t o o  126 powerful,  i n t h e sense o f b e i n g r e s p o n s i b l e f o r h e r s e l f , she  wouldn't g e t t h e l o v e she wants.  I n t h i s case, i t was not women,  but men, she f e a r e d t o a l i e n a t e .  She expressed  i t as f o l l o w s :  I'm a f r a i d . . t o a l l o w . . t o a l l o w my power..I'm a f r a i d t h a t i f I..become a s . . o v e r t l y powerful as I..as I f e e l . . t h e p o t e n t i a l f o r . . t h a t w i l l be t o my detriment. ...I t h i n k t h a t ' s t r u e . . f o r me...that i f I am powerful then I won't..I..nobody w i l l look a f t e r me. Nobody w i l l c a r e f o r me..care..what should I say? Give me..love..I don't t h i n k i t ' s love..but..uhm..if I'm t o o powerful then I w i l l . . I w i l l push people away..(D-34) L a t e r t h i s respondent  commented t h a t she used men so t h a t  she would not have t o be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r h e r s e l f . here, may r e f l e c t G i l l i g a n ' s  (1982) and Caplan's  Her a t t i t u d e s , (1981) t h e o r i e s  t h a t women who have been s o c i a l l y c o n d i t i o n e d t o r e l y on men w i l l f i n d i t d i f f i c u l t t o make t h e i r own c h o i c e s i n l i f e ,  even when  given the opportunity.  C.  Miller  (198 6)  I m p l i c a t i o n s f o r Future  Research  suggests t h a t women coming out o f h i g h  accomplishment o r a sense o f f i g h t i n g f o r a v a l u a b l e cause w i l l f i n d i t e a s i e r t o manifest power as a u t h e n t i c i t y i n t h e world. S i n c e t h i s r e s e a r c h was conducted  with very well-educated,  high  a c h i e v i n g women—who a l s o , f o r t h e most p a r t , f e l t committed t o work towards women's empowerment—and s i n c e c o n c e p t i o n s o f power are, of  l i k e a l l conceptions, c l o s e l y r e l a t e d t o the l i f e - e x p e r i e n c e  t h e respondents,  "privileged"  one might expect t h a t data from a l e s s  group o f women would r e v e a l d i f f e r e n t  conceptions  and/or d i f f e r e n t p e r s p e c t i v e s o r f i g u r e / g r o u n d f o c i i .  Thus,  i t  127 would be i n t e r e s t i n g t o e x p l o r e c o n c e p t i o n s o f power i n a v a r i e t y of l i f e  w i t h women  situations.  As noted, no data were c o l l e c t e d on men's c o n c e p t i o n s o f power, and thus no i n f e r e n c e s can be made about men's understandings psychology  o f t h i s phenomenon.  S i n c e much o f t h e r e c e n t  o f power r e s e a r c h h i g h l i g h t s gender-based d i f f e r e n c e s  i n power approaches and experience, i t seems t h a t i t might be f r u i t f u l t o i n v e s t i g a t e men's c o n c e p t i o n s o f power, w i t h a view t o c o n f i r m i n g o r d i s p r o v i n g gender-based t h e o r i e s .  A l s o , Kahn  (1980) suggests t h a t men's responses t o women's movement toward g r e a t e r power i s important as a determinant  o f t h e ease o r  d i f f i c u l t y w i t h which women and men share power i n t h e world. Thus i n v e s t i g a t i o n o f women and men's c o n c e p t i o n s o f t h e meaning of power e q u i t y i s another d i r e c t i o n f o r r e s e a r c h .  D.  Implications f o r Counselling  T h i s r e s e a r c h on women's conceptions o f power i s c o n s i s t e n t w i t h l i t e r a t u r e i n t h e area o f women and psychology  which  suggests t h a t : (a) women approach power i s s u e s from an o r i e n t a t i o n o f c a r e , r e s p o n s i b i l i t y and connectedness  within  r e l a t i o n s h i p and, (b) women, f o r a v a r i e t y o f reasons, may f e e l f e a r f u l o r ambivalent  about c l a i m i n g power f o r themselves.  I t seems t h a t these i s s u e s have s p e c i a l i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r c o u n s e l l i n g women, p a r t i c u l a r l y when we c o n s i d e r t h e p r o b a b i l i t y of l i n k s between power, s e l f - e s t e e m , and d e p r e s s i o n (which a r e suggested  i n t h e r e s e a r c h data and t h e l i t e r a t u r e ) .  128 Self-esteem  as a measure o f how much we v a l u e o u r s e l v e s and  l i k e o u r s e l v e s i s remarkably s i m i l a r t o c o n c e p t i o n s  expressed by  respondents i n t h i s study, o f power as p e r s o n a l i n t e g r i t y and entitlement.  Expressed  t h i s way, power was seen as knowing  o n e s e l f and f e e l i n g comfortable  and whole w i t h o n e s e l f .  As  e n t i t l e m e n t , t h i s " l i k i n g o n e s e l f " extends t o a r e c o g n i t i o n t h a t one to.  i s d e s e r v i n g o f t h e human r i g h t s which we a r e a l l e n t i t l e d I t seems no a c c i d e n t t h a t respondents not o n l y saw t h i s  " p e r s o n a l i n t e g r i t y " and sense o f e n t i t l e m e n t as power, they a l s o saw  i t , a t times,  as a "source" o f a l l other c o n c e p t i o n s o f  power. Thus, t h i s sense o f p e r s o n a l connectedness and comfort with oneself f e d into the a b i l i t y to: congruently capable  express  oneself  i n t h e world; be aware o f c h o i c e s i n l i f e ,  and be  o f s e l f - d e t e r m i n a t i o n ; g a i n f u l l y u t i l i z e one's p e r s o n a l  and p r o f e s s i o n a l r e s o u r c e s ; g a i n r e s p e c t e d s t a n d i n g among o t h e r s ; and move t o i n f l u e n c e o t h e r s . S i n c e , as p o i n t e d out above, women o f t e n f e e l devalued, group and as i n d i v i d u a l s , i t may be d i f f i c u l t  f o r women who have  i n t e r n a l i z e d n e g a t i v e views o f women t o have p o s i t i v e concepts  and t o f e e l powerful  i n t h e world.  as a  self-  F u r t h e r t o t h i s , and  a l s o d i s c u s s e d above, women as a group, have h i s t o r i c a l l y h e l d little  power i n t h e world and, again, t h e r e s u l t o f t h i s may be  low s e l f - e s t e e m coupled with f e e l i n g s o f powerlessness.  In t h e  l a s t t e n o r f i f t e e n years t h e r e has been a focus by some c o u n s e l l o r s , i n an e f f o r t t o empower women and r a i s e t h e i r esteem, on such i s s u e s as " d r e s s i n g f o r s u c c e s s , " p r o f e s s i o n a l l y " and " a s s e r t i v e n e s s t r a i n i n g . "  self-  "succeeding  As r e c e n t  129 t h e o r i s t s have p o i n t e d out ( G i l l i g a n , 1982; Baker M i l l e r , 1986; McClelland, and  1975), t h e r e i s a danger f o r women and a l o s s f o r men  s o c i e t y as a whole, i n simply adopting  conceptions  o f what i s h e a l t h y o r powerful.  androcentric I n merely  adopting  t r a d i t i o n a l power " s t y l e s " women deny, t o t h e detriment t h e i r o r i e n t a t i o n towards empathic connectedness w i t h  of a l l ,  others.  I t a l s o seems t o me, t h a t a s s e r t i v e n e s s t r a i n i n g as a k i n d of  " s k i l l s t r a i n i n g " f o r women may run t h e r i s k o f m i n i m i z i n g t h e  r e a l i s s u e s a t stake here and end i n merely b e i n g a  "band-aid"  s o l u t i o n f o r t h e core i s s u e o f f e e l i n g s o f powerlessness and low s e l f - e s t e e m i n women.  T h i s has been confirmed,  i n f o r m a l l y , by  t a l k i n g t o c o l l e a g u e s who have commented t h a t i n running a s s e r t i v e n e s s groups f o r women, they o f t e n see t h e same women r e t u r n i n g , time a f t e r time, and making l i t t l e The  l a s t i n g gain.  respondents i n t h i s study g i v e us a c l u e t o t h i s by i n c l u d i n g  a s s e r t i v e n e s s as an aspect o f "power as e x p r e s s i n g integrity." speaking of  I n t h i s sense, a s s e r t i v e n e s s i s seen as a c t i n g o r  out one's t r u t h and v a l u e s i n t h e world,  course,  personal  and i t comes,  out o f a woman's p e r s o n a l p o w e r — h e r sense o f  wholeness and h e r own i n n a t e w o r t h — h e r " l i k i n g " h e r s e l f .  On the  o t h e r hand, a woman who doesn't have a s t r o n g sense o f p e r s o n a l power, who doesn't l i k e h e r s e l f and f e e l a sense o f e n t i t l e m e n t , w i l l n e c e s s a r i l y f i n d i t v e r y d i f f i c u l t — f i r s t , t o even r e a l l y "know" h e r s e l f w e l l enough t o r e c o g n i z e what she does want and n e e d — s e c o n d , t o f e e l h e r e n t i t l e m e n t t o p u t t h a t out i n t h e world—third, without  t o recognize that i t i s p o s s i b l e t o assert h e r s e l f  b e i n g d i s r e s p e c t f u l o r u n c a r i n g towards o t h e r s , o r  130 n e g a t i n g t h e i r r i g h t s and needs. Women w i t h low s e l f - e s t e e m a l s o have d i f f i c u l t y powerful  i n o t h e r ways.  F e e l i n g s t r o n g , competent,  feeling self-  determining, respected or i n f l u e n t i a l are a l l i n c o n s i s t e n t with low s e l f - e s t e e m .  Conversly, when, as Caplan  (1984) and Bardwick  (1976) suggest, women f e e l t h a t l i f e i s beyond t h e i r  control—  t h a t they have no c h o i c e s o r a r e i n c a p a b l e o f making s e l f enhancing  choices i n t h e i r l i v e s — t h e y t r u l y f e e l  powerlessness,  their  and thus may f e e l despondent o r depressed.  Recent  r e s e a r c h and t h e o r y suggests t h a t d e p r e s s i o n i s , overwhelmingly, a woman's problem, w i t h women b e i n g n e a r l y t w i c e as l i k e l y as men t o e x p e r i e n c e d e p r e s s i o n (Bart, 1971; Weissman & Klerman, 1987). In t r e a t i n g d e p r e s s i o n i n women, i t i s important  for counsellors  t o take i n t o account, women's r e a l p o s i t i o n i n t h e world and i n society. reviewed 1991;  The l i t e r a t u r e i n t h e area o f psychology b r i e f l y above (Baker M i l l e r ,  and power  1986; G i l l i g a n ,  1982; L i p s ,  M c C l e l l a n d , 1975), as w e l l as t h e r e s e a r c h data i n t h i s  study, suggest t h a t f o r women, d e p r e s s i o n o f t e n comes out o f an i n t e r p l a y between e x t e r n a l f a c t o r s such as l o s s , trauma and low s o c i e t a l s t a t u s and i n t e r n a l f a c t o r s such women's tendency t o emphasize empathic connections w i t h o t h e r s , women's tendency t o i n h i b i t t h e i r e x p r e s s i o n o f anger and c o n f l i c t , and women's f e e l i n g s o f powerlessness seems t o be a by-product  to act.  T h i s l a t t e r f a c t o r , which  o f g e n d e r - r o l e s o c i a l i z a t i o n f o r many  women, has been termed " l e a r n e d h e l p l e s s n e s s " (Seligman, Women who f e e l powerlessness  1974).  i n t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s as i n  o t h e r a s p e c t s o f t h e i r l i v e s , a r e a l s o a t r i s k i n terms o f being  131 abused by o t h e r s .  Women who remain,  f o r example, i n  r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h p h y s i c a l l y and e m o t i o n a l l y abusive male p a r t n e r s , o f t e n a t g r e a t danger t o themselves, of  u s u a l l y do so out  f e e l i n g s o f " d e s e r v i n g " t h e abuse and/or out o f a l a c k o f any  sense t h a t they have c h o i c e s and c o u l d a c t i n ways t o make l i f e b e t t e r f o r themselves.  I t i s important t o note here t h a t , i n  r e a l i t y , women r e a l l y l a c k v i a b l e c h o i c e s i n these s i t u a t i o n s . woman, perhaps w i t h c h i l d r e n t o c a r e f o r , who may f i n d  A  herself  unable t o l a n d a n y t h i n g b u t a minimum-wage j o b , f o r example—and who might not be a b l e t o r e l y on community support o r r e s o u r c e s such as temporary s h e l t e r i n a " s a f e house," may f e e l , w i t h good reason, t h a t h e r o p t i o n s a r e v e r y l i m i t e d .  C o u n s e l l o r s working  w i t h such women should be c o g n i z a n t o f t h e l i f e r e a l i t i e s t h a t t h e i r c l i e n t s may be d e a l i n g w i t h . F e e l i n g s o f powerlessness "desperate" s i t u a t i o n s . of  a r e not r e s e r v e d f o r women i n  The respondents  i n this study—a  group  r e l a t i v e l y p r i v i l e g e d , well-educated, a c h i e v i n g w o m e n — a l l  spoke o f t h e i r own e x p e r i e n c e s o f f e e l i n g devalued and powerless, in  one way o r another,  i n t h e i r l i v e s , and connected  t h e i r experience as women i n t h e world.  that t o  Statements l i k e :  "In my  r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h my ex-husband..I mean I was j u s t . . t o t a l l y made myself a door mat w i t h him"  (D-8);  "We r e a l l y b e l i e v e t h a t we're  o n l y e n t i t l e d t o t h e few crumbs t h a t people throw us"  (C-9);  "Women have been s o c i a l i z e d t o f e e l . . . . l e s s than, say men...women f i n d i t v e r y d i f f i c u l t t o acknowledge t h e i r s t r e n g t h s . . . . i t seems l i k e i t ' s something t h a t ' s . . a r r o g a n t o r conceited..uhm..and t h a t it's  not okay t o do" (H-45);  and ( i n d i s c u s s i n g a s i t u a t i o n where  132 she f e l t t h a t she c o u l d n ' t do anything t o move h e r l i f e  in a  d i r e c t i o n she wanted t o go), " I g o t v e r y d e p r e s s e d . . . l i k e I c o u l d n ' t do a n y t h i n g "  (E-38).  In e x p r e s s i n g t h e i r commitment t o working,  as c o u n s e l l o r s ,  w i t h o t h e r women, these women p o i n t e d t o t h e empowerment o f women as a primary t h e r a p e u t i c g o a l .  Speaking  o f both t h e i r own  e x p e r i e n c e s o f power/powerlessness and a l s o t h e i r work i n f a c i l i t a t i n g o t h e r women's empowerment through c o u n s e l l i n g , they emphasized t h e importance  o f a " d o u b l e - f a c e t e d " awareness and  emphasis i n c o u n s e l l i n g . One f a c e t o f t h i s focuses on t h e awareness t h a t , women, because they are women, do experience d e v a l u a t i o n and powerlessness  i n our s o c i e t y . In understanding  t h i s , women can b e g i n t o r e c o g n i z e t h a t t h e i r f e e l i n g s o f low s e l f - e s t e e m , weakness and v u l n e r a b i l i t y , r a t h e r than p o i n t i n g t o something v e r y wrong with them i n a p e r s o n a l sense, a r e a n a t u r a l outcome o f t h e i r gender-based s o c i a l i z a t i o n . In b e g i n n i n g t o know t h a t , i n some v e r y important ways, i t i s not " t h e i r problem" alone, b u t one t h a t a l l women, t o some extent", share  and—beyond  t h i s — o n e t h a t has important n e g a t i v e r a m i f i c a t i o n s f o r men, a l s o , and f o r s o c i e t y as a whole, women can perhaps b e g i n t o b u i l d t h e s t r e n g t h t o move out o f t h e i r powerlessness. second  The  f a c e t o f t h i s approach focuses on t h e i n d i v i d u a l woman  c l i e n t , and i n d i s c u s s i n g t h e i r views o f t h e g o a l s and processes o f c o u n s e l l i n g toward empowerment, i n t h i s p e r s o n a l sense, t h e respondents  spoke o f : t h e importance  who she i s — j u s t  of valuing the c l i e n t , f o r  as she i s — w i t h i n t h e t h e r a p e u t i c r e l a t i o n s h i p ,  and communicating t h a t v a l u i n g t o her; t h e importance o f  133 i d e n t i f y i n g and a f f i r m i n g h e r o f t e n d e v a l u e d as  strength  personal  and h e l p i n g h e r r e a l i z e t h a t  life;  she d o e s ,  r e s o u r c e s which she can b u i l d on,  value herself;  "womanly  strengths"  indeed,  have  and f o r w h i c h s h e  e x p l o r i n g t h e c h o i c e s which she does have i n  and r e c o g n i z i n g  wants and needs a r e  that,  along with others'  important  needs,  can her  h e r own  and d e s e r v e t o be t a k e n  into  consideration. Of c o u r s e , different working  diverse  schools  (and men)  t h e e n d , r e l a t e d t o power. to modelling therapist  egalitarian  relationship  therapist.  This  respondents  in this  It  is  of  Person-centered therapy through  and t h r o u g h t h e a t t i t u d e s with opinions  group,  in this  personal  regard,  worked o u t o f  that  about  feeling personally  woman's a p p r o a c h .  is the  Comments  in  sensitive client-  the  expressed  power i n the  in  are often,  by  around the t h e r a p e u t i c importance  and f a c i l i t a t i n g  to note,  of  of  others.  clinic  an open " p e r s o n - c e n t e r e d "  and t h a t most o f t h e c o u n s e l l o r s - i n - t r a i n i n g ,  conversations, by t h i s  this  and u s e f u l  issues—which  power r e l a t i o n s h i p  study  congruence,  supervisor  on t h e i r  seems c o n s i s t e n t  interesting  model,  and many  psychotherapeutic techniques are v a l i d  w i t h women  respect,  of psychotherapy  validated  spoke  in  our  and empowered  like:  Oh! I t was a t r e a t ! B e c a u s e s h e . . w e l l . . t h e r e w a s . . t h e r e s p e c t t h a t I was t r e a t e d w i t h . W h i c h i s n o t a l w a y s t h e c a s e when y o u ' r e a ( s t u d e n t ) . B e c a u s e . . o f c o u r s e , y o u ' r e one down. Y o u ' r e l e a r n i n g how t o do i t , a s w e l l . . . a n d s h e n e v e r made me f e e l l i k e . . m y p o i n t o f v i e w was i r r e l e v a n t o r w r o n g . A n d . . s h e ' d l e t me know when s h e ' d l e a r n e d s o m e t h i n g new f r o m me. W h i c h a g a i n . , empowers y o u . . . A n d , I t h i n k i t c r e a t e d a r e a l l y s a f e e n v i r o n m e n t t h a t way. (C-4) She h a s . . s h e ' s h a d t h e p o w e r , c e r t a i n l y , t o . . t o . . u h m . . . through her m o d e l l i n g . . . t o . . . o f . . f a c i l i t a t e h a v i n g r e a l l y r e s p e c t e d each o t h e r . . . . b e c a u s e she h a s . . I  us  134 t r u l y b e l i e v e she has r e s p e c t e d us..as individuals..um..and even though she has been..she's had the r o l e o f . . o f a s u p e r v i s o r , she has t r e a t e d us as equals. Even though we are i n the l e a r n i n g process..(H-27) C a r l Rogers (1961, 1977,  1980)  s t r e s s e d the importance of  the t h e r a p e u t i c r e l a t i o n s h i p — s p e c i f i c a l l y , the a b i l i t y  of  t h e r a p i s t s t o communicate u n c o n d i t i o n a l p o s i t i v e r e g a r d  for their  c l i e n t s , t o be congruent i n t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s , and c l i e n t s ' own  i n n a t e p o t e n t i a l f o r growth i n d i r e c t i o n s t h a t  important and v a l i d f o r them. i n any way, and  to t r u s t  He p o i n t s our t h a t i n not  c o n t r o l over a c l i e n t ' s responses or way  i n p e r m i t t i n g o n e s e l f t o be as one  of  the  are  seeking, being,  i s , the t h e r a p i s t  f a c i l i t a t e s the d i s c o v e r y of t h i s same freedom i n the  client.  Rogers (1977) s a i d : By l i s t e n i n g t o the f e e l i n g s w i t h i n , the c l i e n t reduces the power o t h e r s have had i n i n c u l c a t i n g g u i l t s and f e a r s and i n h i b i t i o n s , and i s s l o w l y extending the understanding of, and c o n t r o l over, s e l f . As the c l i e n t i s more acceptant of s e l f , the p o s s i b i l i t y of being i n command of s e l f becomes g r e a t e r and g r e a t e r . The c l i e n t possesses h e r s e l f t o a degree t h a t has never o c c u r r e d b e f o r e . The sense of power i s growing, (p. 12) Feminist  and  non-sexist  approaches t o c o u n s e l l i n g seem  p a r t i c u l a r l y v a l i d i n working w i t h women around power i s s u e s . These approaches are v a l u a b l e , among other t h i n g s , i n t h a t they apply a p o l i t i c a l / s o c i a l a n a l y s i s t o the i s s u e s which c l i e n t s s t r u g g l i n g with.  The main t h e r a p e u t i c technique which we  are  might  s p e c i f i c a l l y see as a f e m i n i s t c o u n s e l l i n g i n t e r v e n t i o n i s conscious  and  Russell,  1984)  ongoing s e x - r o l e a n a l y s i s (Rawlings & C a r t e r ,  1977;  which i n v o l v e s b r i n g i n g t o the c l i e n t ' s a t t e n t i o n ,  relevant sex-role expectations  which may  be o p e r a t i n g  f o r them i n  the s p e c i f i c l i f e - s i t u a t i o n s they f i n d themselves working i n , and  135 i n encouraging t h e c l i e n t t o make an aware a n a l y s i s o f t h e c o s t s and  benefits of f u l f i l l i n g  and  Carter  "feminine" r o l e e x p e c t a t i o n s .  Rawlings  (1977) d i s c u s s t h e assumptions o f f e m i n i s t therapy,  which they see as i n c l u d i n g :  (a) an acknowledgement o f t h e power  d i f f e r e n t i a l s i n our s o c i e t y , between men and women, and a focus on s o c i a l r a t h e r than b i o l o g i c a l f a c t o r s t o e x p l a i n women's l e s s e r power and s t a t u s ,  (b) a focus on s o c i e t a l and  environmental s t r e s s as a major source o f u n h e a l t h  (c) a  concommitant weight on i n d i v i d u a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y i n terms o f t h e necessity of personal  a c t i o n towards empowerment, and (d) knowing  t h a t o t h e r women a r e not t h e enemy (and men a r e n o t always t h e enemy, e i t h e r ) .  Beyond t h i s ,  i n t h e i r approaches t o therapy,  f e m i n i s t t h e r a p i s t s may h o l d as g o a l s :  (a) b e i n g e x p l i c i t  t h e i r own v a l u e s — p a r t i c u l a r l y r e g a r d i n g much as p o s s i b l e , e q u a l i z i n g p e r s o n a l and  therapist,  women's r o l e s , (b) as  power between t h e c l i e n t  (c) encouraging s e l f - d e t e r m i n a t i o n  w i t h r e s p o n s i b i l i t y and care f o r o t h e r s , e f f e c t i v e , healthy  about  i n women, along  (d) r o l e - m o d e l l i n g  behaviour, and (e) working w i t h c l i e n t s toward  personal  p o w e r — i . e . knowing and v a l u i n g themselves as unique  beings.  Feminist  t h e r a p i s t s view t h e i r own engagement i n  s o c i a l / p o l i t i c a l a c t i o n as c o n s i s t e n t w i t h t h e i r d e s i r e t o t r e a t the d i s e a s e symptom  (our p o l i t i c a l / s o c i a l system), r a t h e r than j u s t t h e  (the d i s t r e s s e d i n d i v i d u a l ) , and they o f t e n encourage  s o c i a l a c t i o n on t h e p a r t o f t h e i r c l i e n t s . both c o u n s e l l o r s  and c l i e n t s a l i k e , leads t o  T h i s experience, f o r feelings of  e f f e c t i v e n e s s and a g e n c y — t o t h e experience o f b e i n g powerful p e o p l e who can,  indeed, have i n f l u e n c e and e f f e c t change.  These  136 emphases o f f e m i n i s t c o u n s e l l i n g appear t o be c o n s i s t e n t w i t h the l i t e r a t u r e and w i t h the views of the respondents project.  i n t h i s research  137 References A l l p o r t , G. (1955).  The nature o f p r e j u d i c e .  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New York: The Free  145 Appendix A Women's Conceptions o f Power i n All-Women Groups Respondent Consent Form I hereby consent t o p a r t i c i p a t e i n t h e above-named p r o j e c t , a q u a l i t a t i v e r e s e a r c h study aimed a t e x p l o r i n g women's v a r y i n g p e r s o n a l experiences group.  o f power i n t h e context o f an all-woman work  The purpose o f t h e study  i s t o l e a r n more about t h e ways  women see power o p e r a t i n g i n t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s with o t h e r women I am aware t h a t t h e study graduate student attended  i s b e i n g c a r r i e d out by C a r o l Wilson, a  i n C o u n s e l l i n g Psychology a t U.B.C., and I have  a s h o r t c l a s s l e c t u r e / d i s c u s s i o n on t h e purpose and  design o f the research.  F u r t h e r i n f o r m a t i o n i s a v a i l a b l e through  C a r o l , who can be reached a t I understand t h a t I am agreeing t o p a r t i c i p a t e i n a p r i v a t e , audio-taped  i n t e r v i e w and t o answer two b r i e f q u e s t i o n n a i r e s (one  f o c u s i n g on b i o g r a p h i c a l i n f o r m a t i o n t o be completed a t t h e time o f t h e i n t e r v i e w ; t h e other f o c u s i n g on my experience o f p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n t h e p r o j e c t t o be completed w i t h i n two weeks a f t e r t h e i n t e r v i e w ) ; my t o t a l time investment i n t h i s p r o j e c t w i l l be 2 hours, maximum.  I know t h a t data f o r t h e study  will  not be i d e n t i f i e d by name and t h a t a l l i n f o r m a t i o n I may g i v e w i l l remain anonymous and c o n f i d e n t i a l .  I a l s o understand t h a t  my p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n t h i s p r o j e c t i s e n t i r e l y v o l u n t a r y and t h a t I may r e f u s e t o p a r t i c i p a t e o r withdraw a t any time without t h a t such r e f u s a l o r withdrawal w i l l ,  i n any way, j e o p a r d i z e my  c l a s s s t a n d i n g i n CNPS 588 o r any other I have been assured  fear  course.  t h a t r e s u l t s o f t h i s study w i l l be shared  with me, i f I so wish, upon completion  of the project.  My s i g n a t u r e below acknowledges my consent t o p a r t i c i p a t e i n the r e s e a r c h p r o j e c t ; i t a l s o acknowledges my r e c e i p t o f a copy of t h i s consent form. Signature Student's Name (please p r i n t )  Date  146 Appendix B Questionnaire A l l i n f o r m a t i o n i s completely anonymous and c o n f i d e n t i a l . would a p p r e c i a t e i t i f you would complete every q u e s t i o n .  We  1. Age 2. E d u c a t i o n : Highest degree achieved t o date: I am an M.A. student M. Ed. student D o c t o r a l student 3. P l e a s e l i s t belong.  any o r g a n i z a t i o n s o r i n f o r m a l groups t o which you  4. How many o f these groups i n c l u d e both men and women as members? 5. How many o f these groups a r e all-women groups? 6. Name any other all-woman group t o which you have belonged i n the p a s t .  7. How o f t e n do you a t t e n d f u n c t i o n s r e l a t e d t o : The mixed group(s) The all-women group(s) 8. How do you understand t h e term f e m i n i s t ? personal explanation.  9. Do you c o n s i d e r y o u r s e l f a f e m i n i s t ? Yes No  Please give a b r i e f ,  147 Appendix C Post-Interview Questionnaire A l l i n f o r m a t i o n i s anonymous and c o n f i d e n t i a l . P l e a s e keep your responses as c o n c i s e as p o s s i b l e . However, i f you r e q u i r e more space, use the o t h e r s i d e of t h i s sheet. 1. What was  i t l i k e f o r you t o d i s c u s s your e x p e r i e n c e s w i t h  me?  2. What impact, i f any, d i d our c o n v e r s a t i o n ( s ) have on you? (Your thoughts, i d e a s , f e e l i n g s , a t t i t u d e s , behaviour, etc.) On your group? Please be s p e c i f i c .  3. I f you were t e l l i n g a f r i e n d about t h i s r e s e a r c h and our c o n v e r s a t i o n ( s ) , would you recommend t h a t she p a r t i c i p a t e ? P l e a s e e x p l a i n your answer i n c o n c r e t e terms.  4. Have you any o t h e r comments or suggestions r e g a r d i n g our c o n v e r s a t i o n ( s ) i n l i g h t of your experience?  148 Appendix D Transcript Typescript Notation 1. N o n l e x i c a l e x p r e s s i o n s such as "humm," "ah," included.  "uhm"  are  2. F a l s e s t a r t s and r e p e t i t i o n s of word or p a r t s of words are retained. 3. U n c l e a r speech i s e n c l o s e d i n parentheses. 4. Laughter or obvious changes i n p i t c h , s t r e s s , volume or r a t e are noted i n parentheses. 5. H e s i t a t i o n s and pauses are i n d i c a t e d by the use of p e r i o d s . Each p e r i o d corresponds t o approximately one second of silence. For example: would i n d i c a t e a 6 second pause. 6. I n t e r r u p t i o n s and o v e r l a p s between speakers are noted w i t h a l e f t - h a d square b r a c k e t a t the b e g i n n i n g o f the i n t e r r u p t i n g speaker's words.  149 Appendix E Synonyms and Antonyms f o r Power  Synonyms  Antonyms  Self-actualization self-awareness self-confidence self-esteem self-acceptance self-respect b e i n g female b e i n g male love respect courage strength personal strength centred fairness flexibility quality independence inner strength responsibility energy emotional s t r e n g t h control being i n control having c h o i c e s assertiveness soul opportunity comfort self courage  passive aggressive debilitation helplessness doormat authority deviousness bigotry sexism weakness/weak avoidance tiredness/exhaustion ineffectuality insignificance irrelevant paralyzed victimized hopeless trapped lost a follower being c o n t r o l l e d feeling closed i n imprisoned helplessness  150 Appendix F R e s u l t s o f Independent Judge R e l i a b i l i t y  Tests  Table 1 Independent Judges' C a t e g o r i z a t i o n o f Conceptions Conception #  P o s s i b l e number of placements  Judges' number of c o r r e c t placements  Agreement as %  1.  25  24 24  96% 96%  3  3 3  100% 100%  2.  40  38 39  95% 98%  3.  16  16 15  100% 94%  4.  29  29 27  100% 93%  5.  22  21 19  95% 86%  6.  106  103 104  97% 98%  241  234 231  97% 96%  la.  TOTAL  

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