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The Use of Online Asynchronous Interviews in the Study of Paraphilias

By: & Published: 2014 | Product: SAGE Research Methods Cases Part 1
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Sexual paraphilias (and sexual fetishes) are represented in the psychological literature primarily as pathological conditions that need to be treated by a clinician. Very little research exists about ‘healthy’ paraphilias that an individual enjoys as part of a healthy sexual lifestyle and without any clinical problems. However, numerous studies have shown that ‘healthy’ paraphilic interests are widespread and constitute a part of many individuals' sex lives. At present, there are numerous different methodologies in which data about sexual paraphilias can be collected. This case study briefly examines one of these methodologies (i.e. asynchronous online interviews) in relation to a research project on dacryphilia and briefly reviews the advantages, disadvantages and uses. When it comes to studying sexual paraphilias, online asynchronous interviews offer a number of advantages, as they allow researchers to easily reach sensitive (and often rare) populations across the globe. However, it is also argued that a number of considerations should be taken into account (i.e. the location and demographics of the research participants, the proposed analytic technique and the study timeframe) before definitively choosing to use online asynchronous interviews.

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