Critical Kinship Studies

An Introduction to the Field

  • Damien W. Riggs
  • Elizabeth Peel

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xv
  2. Damien W. Riggs, Elizabeth Peel
    Pages 1-21
  3. Damien W. Riggs, Elizabeth Peel
    Pages 23-50
  4. Damien W. Riggs, Elizabeth Peel
    Pages 51-69
  5. Damien W. Riggs, Elizabeth Peel
    Pages 71-97
  6. Damien W. Riggs, Elizabeth Peel
    Pages 99-120
  7. Damien W. Riggs, Elizabeth Peel
    Pages 121-144
  8. Damien W. Riggs, Elizabeth Peel
    Pages 145-175
  9. Damien W. Riggs, Elizabeth Peel
    Pages 177-192
  10. Damien W. Riggs, Elizabeth Peel
    Pages 193-208
  11. Back Matter
    Pages 209-222

About this book


This book draws together research on posthumanism and studies of kinship to elaborate an account of western human kinship practices. Studies of kinship have increasingly sought to critique the normative assumptions that often underpin how caring relationships between humans are understood. The categorisation of 'human' and 'kinship' is brought into question and this book examines who might be excluded through adherence to accepted categories and how a critical lens may broaden our understanding of caring relationships. Bringing together a diverse array of analytic foci and theoretical lenses, Critical Kinship Studies opens up new avenues for understanding what it means to be in relationships with others, and in so doing challenges the human exceptionalism that has often limited how we think about family, loss, love and subjectivity. 

Damien W. Riggs is Associate Professor in social work at Flinders University, Australia and an Australian Research Council Future Fellow. He is the author of almost 200 publications in the fields of gender and sexuality, family, and mental health, in addition to working as a Lacanian psychotherapist in private practice where he specializes in working with transgender young people. 

Elizabeth Peel is a Professor of Communication and Social Interaction in the Department of Social Sciences at Loughborough University, UK and a British Academy Mid-Career Fellow. She is author of over 100 publications in critical social psychology, sexuality and health. She is an Associate Fellow of the BPS and Chair of its Psychology of Sexualities Section. 


Family Relationships Posthumanism Animals Sociology Anthropology Social Psychology Normativity Identity

Authors and affiliations

  • Damien W. Riggs
    • 1
  • Elizabeth Peel
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Social and Policy StudiesFlinders UniversityAdelaideAustralia
  2. 2.Department of Social SciencesLoughborough UniversityLoughboroughUnited Kingdom

Bibliographic information