Duncan, C. M., & Schueths, A. M. (2023). Southern Rural Feminism: US Women Farmers in Production Agriculture. Qualitative Sociology Review, 19(2), 30-49.

Although U.S. women’s contributions to farming are vital, scholarship on U.S. female farmers is limited, especially in the U.S. South. Twelve women farmers in the Southern United States were interviewed about their experiences and opportunities in production agriculture. This study offers further nuance of the sociological and theoretical complexity and interpretive power of difference feminism and intersectionality, focusing on region and place, to a concept we call Southern Rural Feminism. Participants promote women’s equality yet acknowledge gender differences between the binary gender categories of men and women, where the uniqueness of a woman’s touch offers value to the agriculture industry. Nearly all participants’ everyday life in southern agriculture was grounded in the participants’ Christian faith, and some women used Christianity to explain gender dynamics. Within the context of the traditional rural southern culture, all women experienced differential gendered treatment in the industry, from welcomed gentlemanly behavior and gendered slights to more severe discrimination and harassment. Despite widespread gender problems, findings suggest most women do not view systematic gender oppression in the industry, do not adhere to feminist labels, and are cautiously optimistic about the future of female farmers. Incorporating theoretical discussions of Southern Rural Feminism is vital given U.S. Southern Farm Women’s restricted material access to land, and full participation in production agriculture, a field with tremendous gender inequities.