Danger in the Field: Ethics and Risk in Social Research

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The nature of qualitative inquiry means that researchers constantly have to deal with the unexpected, and all too often this means coping with the presence of danger or risk. This innovative and lively analysis of danger in various qualitative research settings is drawn from researchers' reflexive accounts of their own encounters with 'danger'.

An original take on the ever-popular topic of the ethics of research, this pioneering book expands the common sense use of the term to encompass not just physical danger, but emotional, ethical and professional danger too, with the authors paying special attention to the gendered forms of danger implicit in the research process. From the physical danger of researching the night club 'bouncer' scene to the ethical dangers of participant observation in an old people's home, these international contributions provide researchers and students with thought provoking insights into the importance of a well chosen research design.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Routledge
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Published on
Jan 4, 2002
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Pages
224
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ISBN
9781134651047
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Language
English
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Genres
Social Science / Sociology / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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Questions of home and belonging have never been more topical. Populist politicians in both Europe and America play on anxieties over globalisation by promising to reconstitute the national home, through cutting immigration and ‘taking back control’. Increasing numbers of young people are unable to afford home-ownership, a trend with implications for the future shape of families and communities. The dominant conceptualisations of home in the twentieth century – the nation-state and the suburban nuclear household – are in crisis, yet they continue to shape our personal and political aspirations. Home: The Foundations of Belonging puts these issues into context by drawing on a range of disciplines to offer a deep anthropological and historical perspective on home. Beginning with a vision of modernity as characterised by both spiralling liminality and an ongoing quest for belonging, it plumbs the archaic roots of Western civilisation and assembles a wide body of comparative anthropological evidence to illuminate the foundations of a sense of home. Home is theorised as a stable centre around which we organise both everyday routines and perspectives on reality, bringing order to a chaotic world and overcoming liminality. Constituted by a set of ongoing processes which concentrate and embody meaning in intimate relationships, everyday rituals and familiar places, a shared home becomes the foundation for community and society. The Foundations of Belonging thus elevates ‘home’ to the position of a foundational sociological and anthropological concept at a moment when the crisis of globalisation has opened the way to a revaluation of the local.
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"You will not read a more important book about America this year."—The Economist

"A riveting book."—The Wall Street Journal

"Essential reading."—David Brooks, New York Times

Hillbilly Elegy is a passionate and personal analysis of a culture in crisis—that of white working-class Americans. The disintegration of this group, a process that has been slowly occurring now for more than forty years, has been reported with growing frequency and alarm, but has never before been written about as searingly from the inside. J. D. Vance tells the true story of what a social, regional, and class decline feels like when you were born with it hung around your neck.

The Vance family story begins hopefully in postwar America. J. D.’s grandparents were “dirt poor and in love,” and moved north from Kentucky’s Appalachia region to Ohio in the hopes of escaping the dreadful poverty around them. They raised a middle-class family, and eventually one of their grandchildren would graduate from Yale Law School, a conventional marker of success in achieving generational upward mobility. But as the family saga of Hillbilly Elegy plays out, we learn that J.D.'s grandparents, aunt, uncle, sister, and, most of all, his mother struggled profoundly with the demands of their new middle-class life, never fully escaping the legacy of abuse, alcoholism, poverty, and trauma so characteristic of their part of America. With piercing honesty, Vance shows how he himself still carries around the demons of his chaotic family history.

A deeply moving memoir, with its share of humor and vividly colorful figures, Hillbilly Elegy is the story of how upward mobility really feels. And it is an urgent and troubling meditation on the loss of the American dream for a large segment of this country.

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