Advocacy oral history: a research methodology for social activism in nursing

A R Rafael
ANS. Advances in Nursing Science 1997, 20 (2): 32-44
The reinstatement of social activism as a central feature of nursing practice has been advocated by nursing scholars and is consistent with contemporary conceptualizations of primary health care and health promotion that are rooted in critical social theory's concept of empowerment. Advocacy oral history from a feminist postmodern perspective offers a method of research that has the potential and purpose to empower participants to transform their political and social realities and may, therefore, be considered social activism. A recent study of public health nurses who had experienced significant distress through the reduction and redirection of their practice is provided as an exemplar of advocacy oral history. Philosophies underpinning the research method and characteristics of feminist postmodern research are reviewed and implications for the use of this methodology for social activism in nursing are drawn.

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