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Gender, Sex, and SexualitiesPsychological Perspectives$
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Nancy Dess, Jeanne Marecek, and Leslie Bell

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190658540

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190658540.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 31 July 2021

Discursive Psychological Approaches to the (Un)making of Sex/Gender

Discursive Psychological Approaches to the (Un)making of Sex/Gender

(p.127) 6 Discursive Psychological Approaches to the (Un)making of Sex/Gender
Gender, Sex, and Sexualities

Ngaire Donaghue

Oxford University Press

Discursive psychologists question the taken-for-granted status of the categories that are used to classify and investigate human experience (Potter & Edwards, 1996). Instead of assuming the “reality” of sex/gender and conducting empirical investigations into the qualities that characterize “each” of the sexes, discursive psychologists investigate how the concepts of “sex” and “gender” are constructed through their use in both scientific and everyday contexts. For discursive psychologists, there are no “pregiven” meanings attached to the categories of sex/gender. What these categories mean, what they signify, is a matter of negotiation and consensus. This chapter concerns how discursive psychologists have challenged the various assumptions underlying traditional sex differences research and considers alternate approaches drawn from discursive psychology to asking questions about sex/gender.

Keywords:   discursive psychology, social construction, critical theory, choice feminism, evolutionary psychology

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