Women's Decision-Making: Common Themes . . . Irish Voices

By Nancy W. Veeder | Go to book overview

provided confirmation for my other findings on gender differences in decision-making.

I could not have undertaken, much less completed, this effort without the interest, encouragement, and administrative skills of my friend and colleague, Marie Smyth at Magee College, University of Ulster, Derry, Northern Ireland. Marie enthusiastically espoused the subject of this research from the beginning, helped me to train the Northern Irish interviewers (several of whom were her students in social work at Magee College), and, until her departure for the United States as a visiting scholar and lecturer for the 1990-91 academic year, administered the project from Derry--all with puckish good humor. Lest these joint efforts be seen simply as intellectual discussions about feminist theory (and, certainly, we never escape these when we are together), I must point out that they included, like much of the frankly inglorious work of research, attention to such minutiae as malfunctioning tape recorders, poor tape quality, interviewers with a somewhat different sense of time from that of the principal investigator, and joint bank accounts in Boston and Derry.

Marie's work was ably continued in her absence by Marian Hartblay, who demonstrated not only the requisite administrative and humor skills, but considerable grace and acumen as a brand new visitor to Northern Ireland for the 1990-91 academic year. Ultimately this project could not have been so successfully completed if it had not been for Marian's quiet yet very firm decision-making.

To my interviewers I simply have to say that you could not have been any better--totally excited by and immersed in the subject, tireless in selecting the correct sample for the study, and interviewing with a sensitivity that would make any clinician proud. Listing my interviewers cannot begin to express my gratitude to them, but they are Gillian Banham, Derry, Northern Ireland; Eileen Blake, Derry, Northern Ireland; Carol Colton, Derry, Northern Ireland; Marina Hegarty, Strabane, Northern Ireland; Tanya Killen, Derry, Northern Ireland; Elaine Maguire, Derry, Northern Ireland; Deirdre O'Hare, Derry, Northern Ireland (deceased since interviews); Kitty O'Kane, Derry, Northern Ireland; Vera O'Reilly, Derry, Northern Ireland; and Siobhan Twomey, Derry and Dublin, Ireland. This remarkable confluence of commitment, articulateness, creativity, and willingness to share thoughts and feelings among interview respondents, interviewers, and those administering the study, therefore, enabled this study to take form and give voice to its themes.

-x-

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