chapter  4
Getting in and Finding Out: Accessing and Interviewing Elites in Business and Work Contexts
Pages 18

This chapter explores the dilemmas that the author faced as a feminist researcher studying a privileged group of men. It discusses the challenges associated with applying core feminist interviewing principles in her work with this group, in light of the destabilizing of binaries occasioned by contemporary feminist and postmodern thought. The chapter draws on interview data with 16 male structural fire-fighters and 18 male wildland fire-fighters. Conceptualizing interview dynamics as a dialectic of control also opens a space for the kind of critical dialogue championed by Campbell. The chapter wants to employ feminist interview principles on fire-fighters not only as a committed feminist, but because they held promise for creating quality data by mitigating threats to participants' gender displays. Some feminists concerned with the power dynamics implicated in research relationships advocate establishing reciprocal relationships with informants. The chapter focuses on three key principles of feminist interviewing: disclosure, reciprocity and rapport.