Nurse scientists have explored a variety of research methods and a number of philosophic approaches to expand the discipline's ability to describe and investigate nursing's phenomena of interest. This article discusses the similarities and differences in world views, epistemologies, methodologies, and methods of two of these paradigms: critical theory and feminist theory. Attributes of these two stances are contrasted, and the relationship between the methods of analysis and the philosophic point of view are explored. An example of nursing research is given, with discussion of how the approach would differ if the nurse scientist were using critical versus feminist theory as a frame of reference.
© 1991 Aspen Publishers, Inc.