Writing as a living. Handbook of Qualitative Research.
A researcher uses tenets of autobiography and ethnography to do and write autoethnography. Thus, as a method, autoethnography is both process and product. Many of these scholars turned to autoethnography because they were seeking a positive response to critiques of canonical ideas about what research is and how research should be done.
Autoethnographers recognize the innumerable ways personal experience influences the research process. For instance, a researcher decides who, what, when, where, and how to research, decisions necessarily tied to institutional requirements e.
A researcher may also change names and places for protection FINE,compress years of research into a single text, and construct a study in a pre-determined way e. Consequently, autoethnography is one of the approaches that acknowledges and accommodates subjectivity, emotionality, and the researcher's influence on research, rather than hiding from these matters or assuming they don't exist.
Following these conventions, a researcher not only disregards other ways of knowing but also implies that other ways necessarily are unsatisfactory and invalid.
Autoethnography, on the other hand, expands and opens up a wider lens on the world, eschewing rigid definitions of what constitutes meaningful and useful research; this approach also helps us understand how the kinds of people we claim, or are perceived, to be influence interpretations of what we study, how we study it, and what we say about our topic ADAMS, ; WOOD, The Process As a method, autoethnography combines characteristics of autobiography and ethnography.
When writing an autobiography, an author retroactively and selectively writes about past experiences. While epiphanies are self-claimed phenomena in which one person may consider an experience transformative while another may not, these epiphanies reveal ways a person could negotiate "intense situations" and "effects that linger—recollections, memories, images, feelings—long after a crucial incident is supposedly finished" BOCHNER,p.
However, in addition to telling about experiences, autoethnographers often are required by social science publishing conventions to analyze these experiences. Otherwise [you're] telling [your] story—and that's nice—but people do that on Oprah [a U. Why is your story more valid than anyone else's?
What makes your story more valid is that you are a researcher. You have a set of theoretical and methodological tools and a research literature to use. If you can't frame it around these tools and literature and just frame it as 'my story,' then why or how should I privilege your story over anyone else's I see 25 times a day on TV?
Most often through the use of conversation, showing allows writers to make events engaging and emotionally rich. Adding some "telling" to a story that "shows" is an efficient way to convey information needed to appreciate what is going on, and a way to communicate information that does not necessitate the immediacy of dialogue and sensuous engagement.
Sometimes autobiographers may use first-person to tell a story, typically when they personally observed or lived through an interaction and participated in an intimate and immediate "eyewitness account" CAULEY,p.
Sometimes autobiographers may use second-person to bring readers into a scene, to actively witness, with the author, an experience, to be a part of rather than distanced from an event e.
Sometimes autobiographers may use third-person to establish the context for an interaction, report findings, and present what others do or say CAULEY, Autoethnographic Potentials, Issues, and Criticisms 4. Here the emphasis is on the ethnographic study of others, which is accomplished partly by attending to encounters between the narrator and members of the groups being studied TEDLOCK,and the narrative often intersects with analyses of patterns and processes.
Though the focus is on the participant and her or his story, the words, thoughts, and feelings of the researcher also are considered, e. Even though the researcher's experience isn't the main focus, personal reflection adds context and layers to the story being told about participants ELLIS, This form emphasizes the procedural nature of research.
But unlike grounded theory, layered accounts use vignettes, reflexivity, multiple voices, and introspection ELLIS, to "invoke" readers to enter into the "emergent experience" of doing and writing research RONAI,p. Interactive interviews are collaborative endeavors between researchers and participants, research activities in which researchers and participants—one and the same—probe together about issues that transpire, in conversation, about particular topics e.
Interactive interviews usually consist of multiple interview sessions, and, unlike traditional one-on-one interviews with strangers, are situated within the context of emerging and well-established relationships among participants and interviewers ADAMS, Community autoethnographies thus not only facilitate "community-building" research practices but also make opportunities for "cultural and social intervention" possible p.
Co-constructed narratives view relationships as jointly-authored, incomplete, and historically situated affairs. Joint activity structures co-constructed research projects. Personal narratives propose to understand a self or some aspect of a life as it intersects with a cultural context, connect to other participants as co-researchers, and invite readers to enter the author's world and to use what they learn there to reflect on, understand, and cope with their own lives ELLIS,p.
For example, in the United States, during the s, feminist Betty FRIEDAN identified the "problem that has no name"—the "vague, chronic discontent" many White, middle-class women experienced because of not being able to engage in "personal development," particularly of not being able to work outside of the home in equal, supportive working environments WOOD,p.As Laurel Richardson articulates "I consider writing as a method of inquiry, a way of finding out about a topic form and content are inseparable" (, p.
). Volume 9, No. 1, Art. 31 – January Another String to Our Bow: Participant Writing as Research Method. Vivienne Elizabeth.
Abstract: Social scientists have a complex relationship to the psychotherapeutic domain: they have borrowed from it extensively, been openly critical of its individualizing tendencies, and somewhat nervous about any blurring of the boundaries between .
Oct 02, · 3. All this to say, then, that, Richardson offers a means of doing ethnography she calls Creative Analytic Practices (CAP). These practices "display the writing process and the writing product as deeply intertwined; both are privileged.
The product cannot be separated from the producer or the mode of production or the method of knowing" (). Form and content are inseparable" (RICHARDSON, , p).  The shift from writing as a method of recording to writing as a method of inquiry is closely linked to the spread of post-structuralist and post-modernist thought across the social sciences during the s and s.
Pragmatic threads in mixed methods research in the social science: The search for multiple models of inquiry and the end of the philosophy of formalism. In Tashakkori, A., Teddlie, C. (Eds.), Handbook of mixed methods in social & behavioral research (pp.
51 - 90). Feb 23, · Laurel Richardson claimed that writing was a “method of inquiry,” or a “way of finding out” things. "Writing is also a way of ‘knowing’–a method of discovery and analysis." Therefore, she points out: “I write because I want to find so mething out.