Use of pragmatism to explore women’s experiences of traumatic brain injury: a kaleidoscopic view of the world
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Use of pragmatism to explore women’s experiences of traumatic brain injury: a kaleidoscopic view of the world

Kate O’Reilly Associate lecturer, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Western Sydney University, Penrith NSW, Australia
Kath Peters Associate professor, Western Sydney University, Campbelltown NSW, Australia
Nathan Wilson Senior lecturer, Western Sydney University, Hawkesbury NSW, Australia
Cannas Kwok Senior lecturer, Western Sydney University, Parramatta NSW, Australia

Background Although more men than women sustain a traumatic brain injury (TBI), approximately one quarter of people with TBIs are women. The experiences of TBI reported in the literature are informed from the masculine perspective and do not adequately represent women’s experiences. Pragmatism provides an overarching methodological framework to explore and critique a broader perspective of health, including psychosocial, cultural, spiritual, political and environmental factors, while attempting to address gender inequity.

Aim To describe the philosophical background validating the use of pragmatism to research women’s experiences of TBI.

Discussion Given the limited understanding of the interplay of socially constructed barriers with the complex impairments women have following TBI, a novel approach to research is required. Pragmatism offers a way to incorporate critical thinking and advocacy into research designs.

Conclusion The critical feminist transformative framework presented in this paper demonstrates the strengths of using pragmatism as a framework to explore complex phenomena.

Implications for practice This paper illustrates how methodology, which is influenced by various philosophical perspectives, can be woven throughout the design of a research project.

Nurse Researcher. 25, 4, 21-25. doi: 10.7748/nr.2018.e1572


Peer review

This article has been subject to double-blind review and has been checked for plagiarism using automated software

Conflict of interest

None declared

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Received: 04 April 2017

Accepted: 14 September 2017

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