A conversation with the enemy

Document Type

Journal Article


School of Humanities, University of Western Australia

Place of Publication

Crawley, Western Australia


Faculty of Education and Arts


School of Arts and Humanities




Originally published as: Taylor, J. (2015). A conversation with the enemy. Outskirts, 32. Available here

Additional Information

My PhD thesis is an autoethnography. Distress and anger prompted the recollection of my first debilitating years with vulval pain, or vulvodynia: the crisis. The narrative developed into 'a wider investigation into the manifestations of vulvodynia in other women in the past and the present, analysing, in the process, inadequate conceptualisations of genital pain in medicine and psychology' (p. 2): query, challenge and re-evaluation. (Unless otherwise indicated, quotations in this article are drawn from my PhD thesis, Vulvodynia and Autoethnography (2011).) Guided by unfolding life events and inner promptings, my methodological approach found expression through a thesis form that intermingled memoir, theory and speculation: 'The project began to determine its own trajectory, ultimately developing into a complicated life/research praxis in which thought, feeling, body and soul converged' (p. 2).

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