“Bad Feelings”: Reflections on Research, Disciplines, and Critical Methodologies

Ghassan Moussawi, Jyoti Puri

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Based on a conversation between Ghassan Moussawi and Jyoti Puri, this chapter considers the affective possibilities of rethinking research and writing in the context of geopolitics, sociology, and academic institutions. Drawing on Moussawi’s ethnographic fieldwork on LGBTQ formations in Beirut and Puri’s research on the struggle against the antisodomy law in India, the discussion pivots around three questions: How it feels to research places that are considered “home”; how researchers from the global South navigate issues of legibility and accountability as they speak to Euro-American audiences; and how feelings alert researchers from/working on the global South to the limits as well as potentials of sociological research and writing. The conversation begins with Moussawi’s evocative question of feeling badly in the field and during writing, while highlighting affective dissonances in the discipline of sociology and institutional formations. Drawing upon intersectional and postcolonial feminist and queer contributions, the dialogue fruitfully arrives at the concept of “bad feelings.” As a critical and generative analytic, “bad feelings” stands to shed new light on objects and sites of inquiry, highlights the global South as a site of theory production, among others.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSilences, Neglected Feelings, and Blind-Spots in Research Practice
EditorsKathy Davis, Janice Irvine
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781003208563
ISBN (Print)9781032077338, 9781032073422
StatePublished - May 19 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)


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