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ERIC Number: EJ1010742
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1745-7823
Becoming a Networked Public: Digital Ethnography, Youth and Global Research Collectives
Gallagher, Kathleen; Wessels, Anne; Ntelioglou, Burcu Yaman
Ethnography and Education, v8 n2 p177-193 2013
The following article describes a research context that has privileged both virtual and placed-based ethnographic fieldwork, using a hybrid methodology of live and digital communications across school sites in Toronto, Canada; Lucknow, India; Taipei, Taiwan; and Boston, USA. The multi-site ethnographic study is concerned with questions of school (dis)engagement, as experienced by young people often marked as "disadvantaged" and "marginal" to the traditional practices of schooling. Throughout the paper we illustrate, and argue for, the productive use of such methods that combine the live and the digital while also advocating for more methodological experimentation in the processes of fieldwork and analysis. To substantiate our argument for hypertextual and multimodal modes of ethnographic engagement, we offer, in the first section of the paper, examples from face-to-face meetings that generatively combine live discussion and digital video methods. At the same time, we problematise the limits of such exchanges, acknowledging the challenges of trying to map one another's contexts and living conditions through the aesthetic prism of digital video, drama performance and ethnographic interviews. In the second section of the paper, we shift our focus to three illustrative episodes from our Toronto and Lucknow sites. Drawing on theorists Sarah Pink and Patti Lather and Chris Smithies, we bring reflexive analyses to bear on participant-created video texts and Verbatim theatre performances, reading these data as narrative constructions that reveal multiple perspectives rather than literal, representative truths. We further argue that as student participants take control of their drama performances and digital video creations, focusing on the contours of their daily lives, they become co-constructors of an emerging youth knowledge base across these global sites. Drawing on the work of Wendy Morgan, who observes the changing power relations made possible through hypertextual digital media, we maintain that as these students create both live and digital performances and make meaning through discussion and ethnographic interviews, they shift relations of power, inviting researchers into a "networked community" premised upon a fluctuating virtual, live, and digitally mediated culture. (Contains 6 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada (Toronto); India; Massachusetts; Taiwan (Taipei)
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A