Faculty of Social and Human Sciences (UNL) Conference System, 1st Non-Monogamies and Contemporary Intimacies Conference

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The construction of consensually non-monogamous different-sex relationships in Lithuania
Darja Lyzenko

##manager.scheduler.building##: B Tower
##manager.scheduler.room##: T11
Date: 2015-09-27 02:30 PM – 04:00 PM
Last modified: 2015-08-08


The prevailing mode of constructing romantic relationships in Western culture in general and Eastern Europe in particular is a monogamous coupledom. Thus non-monogamous patterns of intimacy as a valid way of relating share the fate of alternative sexuality and continue to be largely excluded from the social scientific discourse. To get more local, the analysis of internet comments on the second most visited news site in Lithuania www.lrytas.lt, which was conducted in 2013 by the author, revealed that the notion of non-monogamous lifestyle and traditional family relationships are most often understood as two completely different, even opposite discourses, that for various reasons are impossible to combine. However there are many individuals who choose to be in consensually non-monogamous relationship (i.e. open relationship and/or polyamory and/or swinging). Thus the particular questions arise:  why, considering prevailing mononormativity in Lithuania, do coupled individuals choose to be consensually non-monogamous and how do they succeed (and/or fail) in managing their relationships.

The research as a part of PhD thesis in sociology is being conducted in qualitative methodology. The main research tool is the grounded theory method developed by Strauss and Corbin, combined with constructivist Charmaz‘s insights. The semi-structured interview sample consist of 25 y.o. and older men and women who  consider themselves as non-monogamous and are currently (or have had an experience of being) in a consensually non-monogamous different-sex relationships. The purpose of this research is to generate a theory on the way non-monogamous people construct their relationships in Lithuania. The solid partial results of ongoing research are due to July, 2015.