Using Cultural Discourse Analysis to Research Gender and Environmental Understandings in China



My purpose in this article is to discuss the application of cultural discourse analysis to questions of environmentalism—particularly for examining how environmental meaning making is connected to cultural meaning making around other topics, such as gender. The article centers on my own use of cultural discourse analysis to examine interview data collected from Chinese village participants in the Environmental Empowerment Program (EEP), a program that educates Chinese women farmers in community development principles, ecological science, and sustainable agricultural development. I first share my method—how I used cultural discourse analysis techniques to analyze what EEP participants had to say in interviews, followed by an explanation of the main findings of this analysis. I use the explanation of these findings as springboard for the final discussion—the implications of using cultural discourse analysis as an environmental research tool. [discourse analysis, China, gender, environmentalism, cultural schema]