Graduate School of Social Service Assistant Professor Sameena Azhar, Ph.D., recently published an article which applied an intersectional lens to explore how women of color from two different contexts, Hyderabad, India and Chicago, Illinois, manage gendered forms of stigma and oppression.
The article, titled “Navigating Intersectional Stigma: Strategies for Coping Among Cisgender Women of Color,” appeared this month in Qualitative Health Research.
From the abstract:
Intersectionality is a critical tool for understanding how socially constructed categories shape multiple dimensions of lived experience. In this study, we apply an intersectional lens to explore how women of color from two different contexts, Hyderabad, India and Chicago, Illinois, manage gendered forms of stigma and oppression as they converge with other devalued statuses, namely living with HIV or having a history of drug use or incarceration. Applying intersectional stigma as our conceptual framework, and drawing from transnational feminist perspectives, we identified two overarching themes. Women in both contexts combat stigma by employing strategies of concealment within their romantic and familial systems. Moreover, women’s roles as mothers were critical sources for managing their complex illnesses and for accessing support. Using these experiences of stigma against women of color as our analytic lens, we offer an intersectional framework for qualitative health research involving marginalized cisgender women of color in transnational contexts.