Moving images: Psychoanalytically informed visual methods in documenting the lives of women migrants and asylum seekers

Author(s):Janice K. HAAKEN, and Maggie O’NEIL


While feminist arts-based projects have gained legitimacy, theory guiding the use of visual images in field research has lagged. Drawing on psychoanalytic-feminist theory and participatory action research methods, the article presents a study carried out with women refugee and asylum seekers that focuses on their experiences in seeking a place of safety in the United Kingdom. The aim was to produce through photography and videography a collective account of asylum as a daily process. In discussing the study, the authors provide a psychoanalytic framework for working through ethical, political, and methodological dilemmas in the use of visual imagery in feminist research.

Key words: Asylum seekers, participatory action research, photovoice, psychoanalytic-feminist research, visual methods, women migrants

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