Fry, Anna (2019) Intersectionality and Non-Heterosexual British South Asian Women: A Critical Narrative Analysis. Doctoral thesis, University of Huddersfield.

Relatively recently there has been a significant increase in literature concerning non-heterosexual women and also a substantial increase in the study of non-heterosexual identities and the prevalence of mental health difficulties within this minority group. However, the study of British South Asian non-heterosexual women is noticeably absent in the areas of lived experience, mental health and well-being. This study was prompted by the relative absence of literature on the lived experience of non-heterosexual British South Asian Women and by the fact that much of the existing literature focuses on homosexual Asian men, thus ignoring the lives of non-heterosexual women within British South Asian culture.

Opportunity or convenience sampling was utilised to recruit participants through Hindu Sikh and Muslim lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender support groups, through strategically placed flyers and through social media. Using Critical Narrative Analysis based on the hermeneutic phenomenological approach of Paul Ricouer the lifeworld of eleven self-identified non-heterosexual British South Asian woman is explored in terms of lived experience, mental health and resilience through the analysis of semi-structured interviews. Key narratives such as the "good" daughter, coming out, queer Asian identity, cultural connectedness, mental distress and help seeking are identified, and explored, through the lens of minority stress (Meyer, 2003),Psychological processes (Hatzenbeuhler, 2009) and Identity Process Theory (Breakwell, 1986). The lives of the women in this study demonstrate unique intersections between gender, sexuality, culture, spirituality and ethnicity in an environment of religiously and culturally endorsed homophobia, which prevents their freedom to openly explore and express their sexuality. This study explores the difficulties faced by non-heterosexual British South Asian Women due to their invisibility and the impact of this on their mental health and well-being. Future research identifying links between collectivist cultures and other-focussed emotions suggest that collectivist cultures may experience minority stress, general psychological processes and identity integration in other-focussed ways that may moderate psychopathology is suggested. Furthermore, the application of identity Process Theory (Breakwell, 1986; Jaspal and Cinnirella, 2012), as an interpretive tool, to the minority stress processes in LGB individuals framework proposed by Meyer (2003) may further enhance minority stress theory and offer a more complete interpretative framework for assessing mental health outcomes in specific minority groups.

FINAL THESIS - FRY, ANNA.pdf - Accepted Version
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