In this conceptual paper, the author offers a rethinking of the concept of voice in qualitative research informed by feminist, postcolonial, and poststructural theories. Using Deleuze & Guattari’s figuration of the rhizome, the irruptions of voice in feminist and postfoundational qualitative research are mapped to invent a concept of voice, rhizovocality, that signifies voice as excessive and transgressive yet interconnected. This mapping begins with early feminist emancipatory research that assumed an authentic, silent woman’s voice in need of liberation. Then, the author moves into dilemmas of power that emerged from critiques of problematic representations of voice within feminist research. The third section of the paper is a postcolonial feminist response to imperial uses of voice in feminist research, and the final part is a feminist deconstructive critique of voice in qualitative research. The article concludes with an argument for rhizovocality as a conceptual, deconstructive tool for working the limits of voice in qualitative research.
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