European Journal of Policing Studies


Masking the Inner-Killjoy: A Critical Feminist Perspective on Police Research

Authors Leah Molyneux
Author's information

Leah Molyneux
Leah Molyneux, PhD Candidate, Sociology, Social Policy and Criminology, University of Liverpool.
  • Abstract

      Drawing on her ethnographic doctoral research, the author reflects on the challenges of employing a feminist methodology when observing the police. The article will discuss the fraught process of gaining trust and sustaining fragile access by betraying the self. The feminist killjoy (Ahmed, Living a Feminist Life; Ahmed, The Feminist Killjoy Handbook) is used as a lens to examine the author’s response to the political and ethical dilemmas that she encountered during fieldwork. This will lead to considering whether a “critical empathy” framework is a valuable approach to conducting police research from a feminist perspective. This discussion will offer new tools for dealing with the emotional complexities of ethnographic research. It will make a strong case for the possibilities and importance of conducting feminist research about the police.

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