Book “Sociology of the couple. Intimate practices in nonheterosexual relationships”

It is our pleasure to inform that Agata Stasińska published a book based on the results of the project. Abstract below:
The book: Sociology of the Couple. Intimate Practices in Non-Heterosexual Relationships aims to provide a sociological portrait of the dynamics of intimacy of non-heterosexual relationships in Poland on the basis of qualitative research: 53 individual in-depth narrative interviews with LGBT people, and an ethnographic study conducted in 21 non-heterosexual families (based on participant observation and over a hundred thematic narrative interviews) conducted as part of a broader research project entitled Families of Choice in Poland (2013-2016) coordinated by dr hab. Joanna Mizielińska at the Institute of Psychology at the Polish Academy of Sciences, where different quantitative and quantitative methods were employed as research approaches. How do non-heterosexual people living in Poland understand and practice intimate life? What is the relation between their sexuality and daily intimate life? How is the intimate life of non-heterosexual people situated in the context of contemporary transformations of intimacy? What is the impact of the sociocultural context of Poland on the intimate life of non-heterosexual people? The author answers these questions with reference to theories and research connected to the sociology of intimacy, sociology of sexuality and sociology of everyday life and using the perspective inspired by queer and gender studies.
The book consists of four parts. In the first, including chapters 1 and 2, I discuss the most important theoretical approaches. Chapter 1 is devoted to theories on contemporary transformations of intimacy in sociological thought of theorists i.e. Anthony Giddens, Ulrich Beck and Elizabeth Beck Gernsheim, Zygmunt Bauman, and researchers i.e. Eva Illouz, Arlie Hochschild, Lynn Jamieson, Carol Smart and Jacqui Gabb. Chapter 2 concerns the issue of sexuality and its relation to the intimate citizenship of non-heterosexual people and the theories of Michel Foucault, Jeffrey Weeks, Ken Plummer, Diane Richardson, Joanna Mizielińska and Robert Kulpa.
The second part of the book is Chapter 3 in which the methodology of the data collection and its analysis is presented. This part addresses several detailed issues, such as sample characteristics, recruitment, the ethics of the study, the specificity of the analytical process and the limitations of the study.
The third and most extensive part of the book consists of eight chapters corresponding to the selected analytical areas of intimate life. Subsequent chapters are then devoted to the following issues: displaying affection, communication, symbolic ways of displaying affection, jealousy, continual (non)monogamy, bodily practices and intimate practices in the public sphere.
The fourth part of the book is Chapter 12, which is a summary of the whole book. The author marries the empirical material with the theories about LGBT intimacy and discusses the most important implications of her analysis. In this part she shows the emergence of leaving behind the paradigm of big sociological theories (i.e. Giddens’ ‘pure relationship’ and ‘disclosing intimacy’) and the necessity of understanding intimacy through daily ‘intimate practices’ and ‘silent intimacy’ (Gabb, Jamieson). She demonstrates the burning, overriding need to engage with the idea of intimate citizenship and understand the dynamics of intimate life through the lens of local geo-temporal conditions. Therefore she proposes to contest Western ideas of queer intimacy and suggests how its understanding is conditioned by various socio-cultural circumstances, and may thus be practiced differently in Poland than in the West.

To buy the book go to: (paperback)
or,758132964,p.html (ebook)