Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

History in the making: Narratives of selected Asian Pacific American women in leadership
by Almandrez, Mary Grace A., Ed.D., University of San Francisco, 2010, 173; 3416984
Abstract (Summary)

The commitment of Asian Pacific American (APA) women to communities of color is not unique. However, their passions, experiences, and narratives have not been widely shared and are rarely considered in the study of leadership. Conventional notions of leadership as gendered, racialized, hierarchical, and individual-focused experiences do not necessarily reflect Asian Pacific American women's leadership. This research inquiry calls for a paradigm shift where leadership is grounded in identity and being.

This study employed a participatory inquiry protocol with an orientation in critical hermeneutics (Herda 1999) to account for the sociocultural complexity involved with Asian Pacific American women's experiences. The data was created in a collaborative partnership between the participants and researcher. Data analysis drew upon the works of Ricoeur (1984, 1992), Kearney (1998, 2002), and Herda (1999) with specific focus on narrative identity, mimesis, and imagination. Through the exchange of stories and ideas, self-reflection, and continuous re-interpretation, both the participants and the researcher reached new understandings.

The narratives of select Asian Pacific American women revealed four key findings. First, identity and being cannot be separated from leadership. Research participants revealed that founding events, cultural traditions, and relationships with others influenced the ways they led and served their communities. Second, Asian Pacific American women feel an ethical responsibility to carry on their legacies of leadership. They expressed a sense of responsibility to both honor the past and develop future leaders. Third, images of leadership can and do change over time. As Asian Pacific American women continue to share their stories, they provide educators, scholars, and communities with diverse images of leadership. Fourth, Asian Pacific American women place solicitude at the heart of ethical action. Participants considered recognition, reciprocity, and solicitude in their leadership.

The appropriation of identity through the medium of leadership is rarely, if ever, considered by scholars. Understanding how identity informs leadership and leadership influences identity may provide insight on the varied ways that Asian Pacific American women lead and inspire their communities.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Herda, Ellen
School: University of San Francisco
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-A 71/08, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Asian American Studies, Womens studies, Organization Theory
Keywords: Asian Pacific-American, Imagination, Leadership, Mimesis, Narrative identity, Women leaders
Publication Number: 3416984
ISBN: 9781124114682