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At-home ethnography: a native researcher’s fieldwork reflections

Azher Hameed Qamar (Department of Behavioral Sciences, National University of Sciences and Technology, Islamabad, Pakistan)

Qualitative Research Journal

ISSN: 1443-9883

Article publication date: 2 July 2020

Issue publication date: 19 January 2021

263

Abstract

Purpose

In last few decades, the native anthropology has been highlighted for its potential to immediately grasping cultural familiarity, contextual sensitivity, and rapport building. Nevertheless, detachment from the native context is also seen as a challenge for the native researcher. This paper aims to provide invaluable information about the fieldwork experience of the author as a native researcher in rural Punjab Pakistan. The author presents and reflects the fieldwork challenges faced and the strategies used to overcome the challenges. The primary objective of this paper is to discuss the methodological strategies to face the challenges of doing at-home ethnography.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper is based on ethnographic fieldwork conducted in native context.

Findings

Dealing with contextual complexity and sensitivity with the author’s native learning, the author used native knowledge as a useful resource to investigate insider’s perspective on infant care belief practices. Furthermore, the author addressed the challenges related to building rapport, gaining friendly access to the families and children, and setting aside presumptions. The author discusses the strategies opted, such as selecting a research assistant, gaining access to the field, planning fieldwork and bracketing native presumptions.

Practical implications

This paper provides important insight of at-home ethnography and technical understanding to conduct fieldwork in native contexts.

Originality/value

Based on my ethnographic fieldwork, this article contributes in contemporary debates on the challenges in doing at-home ethnography.

Keywords

Citation

Qamar, A.H. (2021), "At-home ethnography: a native researcher’s fieldwork reflections", Qualitative Research Journal, Vol. 21 No. 1, pp. 51-64. https://doi.org/10.1108/QRJ-03-2020-0019

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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