Situational analysis has, as an emerging poststructuralist approach to grounded theory, recently grown in use across a diverse range of disciplines and substantive areas. In this paper, we consider the complementarity of Foucauldian governmentality as a theoretical framework for supporting and enriching situational analyses. Our work is based on the findings of a recent study, informed by situational analysis, in which we interviewed 27 HIV-positive (n=16) and HIV-negative (n=11) gay men ages 50 and over about their health care experiences, and used these data to examine processes of subjugation and resistance reflected in their accounts. Drawing on our analytical process, we consider the utility of governmentality in identifying salient discursive forces within a situation of interest, in theorizing how contextual factors operate on and influence the experiences of key actors in a field of inquiry, and in generating insight on fluid uses of power within an area under examination.


Grounded Theory, Situational Analysis, Governmentality, Older Gay Men, Aging; Health Care

Author Bio(s)

Dr. Hannah Kia is an Assistant Professor at the University of British Columbia's School of Social Work, and has accepted this position after completing her doctoral research at the University of Toronto's Dalla Lana School of Public Health. Her program of research broadly addresses aging in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, two-spirit, and other sexual and gender minority (LGBTQ2S+) communities, and additionally centres questions related to social work practice with these populations. She has published both theoretical and empirical works in the field of LGBTQ2S+ aging, and has received funding from agencies such as the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) to support her work in this area. Please direct correspondence to hannah.kia@ubc.ca.

Dr. Carol Strike is a Professor at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, and a Scientist at the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, St. Michael's Hospital. Her research program aims to improve health services for people who use drugs and other marginalized populations.

Dr. Daniel Grace is an Assistant Professor at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto and Canada Research Chair in Sexual and Gender Minority Health. He is a medical sociologist who conducts interdisciplinary research to advance the physical, sexual, and mental health of sexual and gender minorities.

Dr. Lori Ross is an Associate Professor in the Social and Behavioural Health Sciences Division of the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, and leader of the Re:searching for LGBTQ Health Team. Lori conducts community-based, mixed methods research in partnership with communities that experience marginalization.

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