The potential and challenges of critical realist ethnography

2.50
Hdl Handle:
http://hdl.handle.net/2173/235151
Title:
The potential and challenges of critical realist ethnography
Authors:
Barron, Ian
Citation:
International Journal of Research & Method in Education, 2013, vol. 36, no. 2, pp. 117-130
Publisher:
Routledge
Publication Date:
May-2012
URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/2173/235151
DOI:
10.1080/1743727X.2012.683634
Additional Links:
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/1743727X.2012.683634
Abstract:
This article revisits the critical realist ethnographic process that was adopted in my doctoral thesis, which was concerned with the experiences of ethnic identity of white British and Pakistani British children as they started kindergarten in the northwest of England. The article focuses on the ethnography that emerged from the visits that I carried out alongside staff to children's homes before they started kindergarten and on the way in which these were portrayed and analysed in the final thesis. I conclude that the process of observation, writing field notes and then producing a fuller ethnography produced a very partial representation of the empirical world. This was problematic in that, in critical realism, what is observed in the world of the ‘empirical’ and considered in the world of the ‘actual’ forms the basis for understanding the underlying causal tendencies which point to the underlying explanatory concepts in the world of the ‘real’. I argue, however, that more careful critical realist ethnography has the potential to be a powerful methodological framework which accepts the contested nature of reality but which, unlike postmodernism, provides a means of addressing possibilities and of moving beyond ‘undecidability’.
Type:
Article
Language:
en
Keywords:
Ethnography; critical realism; ethnic identity; young children
ISSN:
1743-727X; 1743-7288

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorBarron, Ianen_GB
dc.date.accessioned2012-07-23T11:03:24Z-
dc.date.available2012-07-23T11:03:24Z-
dc.date.issued2012-05-
dc.identifier.citationInternational Journal of Research & Method in Education, 2013, vol. 36, no. 2, pp. 117-130en_GB
dc.identifier.issn1743-727X-
dc.identifier.issn1743-7288-
dc.identifier.doi10.1080/1743727X.2012.683634-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/2173/235151-
dc.description.abstractThis article revisits the critical realist ethnographic process that was adopted in my doctoral thesis, which was concerned with the experiences of ethnic identity of white British and Pakistani British children as they started kindergarten in the northwest of England. The article focuses on the ethnography that emerged from the visits that I carried out alongside staff to children's homes before they started kindergarten and on the way in which these were portrayed and analysed in the final thesis. I conclude that the process of observation, writing field notes and then producing a fuller ethnography produced a very partial representation of the empirical world. This was problematic in that, in critical realism, what is observed in the world of the ‘empirical’ and considered in the world of the ‘actual’ forms the basis for understanding the underlying causal tendencies which point to the underlying explanatory concepts in the world of the ‘real’. I argue, however, that more careful critical realist ethnography has the potential to be a powerful methodological framework which accepts the contested nature of reality but which, unlike postmodernism, provides a means of addressing possibilities and of moving beyond ‘undecidability’.en_GB
dc.language.isoenen
dc.publisherRoutledgeen_GB
dc.relation.urlhttp://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/1743727X.2012.683634en_GB
dc.rightsArchived with thanks to International Journal of Research & Method in Educationen_GB
dc.subjectEthnographyen_GB
dc.subjectcritical realismen_GB
dc.subjectethnic identityen_GB
dc.subjectyoung childrenen_GB
dc.titleThe potential and challenges of critical realist ethnographyen
dc.typeArticleen
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