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Researcher positionality in practice: uncanny reflections and the case of compulsive behaviour of people with Tourette syndrome

Beljaars, Diana 2015. Researcher positionality in practice: uncanny reflections and the case of compulsive behaviour of people with Tourette syndrome. Presented at: Welsh Human Geography Postgraduate Conference, Gregynog, 11-13 march 2015.

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Abstract

Researcher positionality has been subject of concern in human geographical methodology, following a widespread rejection of the pursuit of scientific objectivism and neutrality in the social research encounters (Haraway, 1988; Rose, 1997). Subsequently, methodologies have increasingly been sensitive of social dimensions of researcher-researched relations (Demeritt & Dyer, 2002), and of geographical dimensions of the research setting (Anderson et al., 2010). However, the influence of the embodied practice of methodology on researcher positionality has received less attention (but see Mol, 2002; Despret, 2013). This article addresses this issue by arguing for a consideration of the doing of method in researcher positionality, which may be especially salient for disability research. It does so by considering the position of the researcher in a case study in which the research focuses on the material and social circumstances of compulsive behaviour expressed by people with Tourette syndrome (TS). The researcher has a sister with a TS diagnosis, but she does not, despite its genetic basis. As compulsive but unintentional behaviour in TS can often be framed as exaggerated ‘normal’ behaviour, the researcher’s behaviour has both been scrutinised by participants in this study during research practices, and by the researcher herself, especially outside research encounters.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Date Type: Completion
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Geography and Planning (GEOPL)
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GF Human ecology. Anthropogeography
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Last Modified: 07 Nov 2019 09:03
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/78599

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