This book explores intimate relationships in lesbian families living in American society. From an insider's point of view, it examines how relationships within these families form and develop, what special concerns and problems result, what personal gains the family members derive from these types of families, and how motherhood and parenthood evolve. This work is a companion to Dr. Asten's ethnographic video, Intimate Relationships in Three Lesbian Families Living in American Society.
Most of the literature on lesbian families compares heterosexual families to lesbian families and uses the researcher's perspective as the core unit of analysis. In contrast, this work is an interrelated filmed/written ethnography which is the result of participant observation and feminist participatory research. It includes not only the researcher's data analysis but also the participants' reaction to and interaction with the process. Providing a unique understanding of the diversity of the American family, this is an important contribution to the growing fields of lesbian/feminist studies and visual anthropology, as well as sociology and psychology. For a copy of the video, Intimate Relationships in Three Lesbian Families Living in American Society, that accompanies this book, contact Dr. Maureen A. Asten, 1 Fifth Avenue, Shrewsbury, MA 01545. Telephone: (508) 799-9746.