Bad Feelings: On Trauma, Nonlinear Time, and Accidental Encounters in “the Field”

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This essay explores what I describe as “bad feelings” in the field and the research process. Combining autoethnography with feminist and queer methods, I counter the stigma around trauma and feelings of shame and fear in research. I ask what happens when the researcher experiences bad feelings that recall past lived trauma, and that challenge their sense of safety and security. In addition, I consider what it means for researchers to feel bad about their research. I argue that feeling one’s research, and thinking through and with bad feelings, opens up the possibility to “accidentally fall” into productive, and perhaps, alternative issues of study.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)78-96
Number of pages19
JournalDepartures in Critical Qualitative Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2021


  • Bad feelings
  • Recursive time
  • Queer theory
  • Autoethnography
  • Affect

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Communication
  • Linguistics and Language


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