Series editor(s): Dr. Sam Hillyard
Subject Area: Sociology and Public Policy
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|Title:||Chapter 4 Ethnography and the myth of participant observation|
|Author(s):||Martin G. Forsey|
|Volume:||11 Editor(s): Sam Hillyard ISBN: 978-1-84950-942-8 eISBN: 978-1-84950-943-5|
|Citation:||Martin G. Forsey (2010), Chapter 4 Ethnography and the myth of participant observation, in Sam Hillyard (ed.) New Frontiers in Ethnography (Studies in Qualitative Methodology, Volume 11), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp.65-79|
|DOI:||10.1108/S1042-3192(2010)0000011007 (Permanent URL)|
|Publisher:||Emerald Group Publishing Limited|
|Article type:||Chapter Item|
As already indicated, I first became aware of the power of the myth of participant observation during my doctoral research, conducted in a government high school in Perth, Western Australia in 1998–1999. I remember well the day when, while writing one of the chapters of my thesis, it suddenly occurred to me that much of what I was recording as data, in what I was blithely calling a participant observer study, were the “droppings of talk” from informal conversations and formal interviews that had taken place with the teachers, students, and parents associated with the school (Moerman, 1988, p. 8). There was little in the final product and in the published version by way of direct observational data (see Forsey, 2007).
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