How female physicians perceive their professional roles: What's gender got to do with it?
AuthorPozner, Rochelle, 1936-
KeywordsHealth Sciences, Education.
Health Sciences, Obstetrics and Gynecology.
Education, Teacher Training.
Sociology, Individual and Family Studies.
Education, Curriculum and Instruction.
AdvisorHorak, Willis J.
Fox, Dana L.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe purpose of this study was to describe the experiences and perceptions of two female obstetrician-gynecologists in their world of academic and clinical medicine. Significant to this dissertation is the complex issue of gender. The theoretical and research perspectives were (1) gender discrimination in the education of girls; (2) feminism in the medical school and the medical workplace; and (3) the literature of caring and connectiveness as it is related to the field of medicine. My prior pilot study and research for my gender issues course I taught in medical school were the deciding factors that initiated this richer dissertation study. The case study approach was used in this ethnographic research, and with my role as participant and a non-participant observer, I conducted multiple observations of participants, wrote field notes and conducted three semi-structured interviews with each participant. I analyzed the data inductively, and then made a cross-case analysis of the variables I found for my study. The findings from this study reveal the importance of family, husbands, and significant others in their continued support of their professional careers. Both participants had positive experiences in their early schooling and supportive mentors in their medical careers. They also agreed that relationships and interactions with patients are the most important aspects of their specialty, and that women doctors "listen more"; however, they believe that the environment plays a role in these differences related to gender. The biggest challenge perceived by the academic physician is the hostility of a system that does not recognize diversity or values of the female doctors who work in the system. She diagnoses this system as unhealthy and inflexible to both male and female physicians. The biggest challenge perceived by the married woman physician revolved around her juggling of family and professional concerns. The significant findings from the theoretical and historical perspectives relative to this study, braided with the insights voiced by the two physicians, strongly suggest a need for curricula and pedagogical restructuring related to feminist knowledge in both our medical institutions and our educational institutions.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Teaching and TeachingEducation