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Reflections of being adopted as a ‘daughter’ in the process of qualitative fieldwork Kang, Bindy 2008-04-25

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“Aparnay Lowkh” (our people): Reflections of being adopted as a ‘daughter’ in the process of qualitative work Does Cultural Insidership matter?  Does it matter in the context of a research project?  How does it influence the data that is produced?  How does it influence the interpretation of that data? Road Map … Dhil Dhee Sehayth Project Cultural Insidership Aparnay Lowkh Locating Myself … Voices from the Data Researcher/Daughter Hybridity Dhil Dhee Sehayth Project Heart Health Project • PD + Interviewer • PI: Paul Galdas • Pilot Project • N = 15 Dhil Dhee Sehayth Project Recruitment Punjabi Cardiac Rehabilitation Education 8 Week Program Lecture Format 1 to 1 Sessions Dhil Dhee Sehayth Project Methodology Qualitative Interviews Homes 10 ♂ & 5 ♀ Follow up discussions Cultural Insidership • ‘it’s easier that you’re a girl and that you’re Asian’: interactions of ‘race’ and gender between researchers and participants (Archer, 2000) • perceived gender & perceived racial/ethnic identity influenced what information was shared with the interviewer The Insider/Outsider Debate • Insider – Proximity – Bias – Postcolonial/Feminist – Shared Lens • Outsider – Misinterpretation – Essentializing – Colonizer/Colonized – Different Lens Locating Bindy in the research process …  Female  Indian  Punjabi  Punjabi speaker  Sikh  Village Identity  Familial Identity  Place of birth  Visits to India  Where I live in Canada  Marital status = Daughter        “Aparnay Lowkh”  Punjabi phrase Loosely defined as our people Intimate Closeness Community  Kinship ties  Punjabis Unique relationship: Punjab & India Uncle Ji & Auntie Ji • Prem Singh & Shanti Kaur • Husband & wife • Recruitment • Home as a guest • Returning to the main group Aunties … • Tarsem Auntie Ji: Uncle Ji tea, grandson, daughter in law, and son • Daljit Auntie Ji: grandchildren running around after their bath • Mohinder Auntie Ji: shared gender & shared cultural understanding Uncles … • Gurdial Uncle Ji: “our daughters”- model citizens, India as our mother & Canada as our Musie • Preetham Uncle Ji: Saag, racism, language barrier • Bhupinder Uncle Ji: wedding, Gurdwara, racism in health care From researcher to daughter… • Trust • Shared cultural framework • Influences … information that was shared Moving beyond “daughter” • Model daughter: our “daughters” • Also problematic daughter • To a sibling to their children • To an aunt to their grandchildren …Aparnay Lowkh From daughter to researcher … • Trust • Sharing intimate and painful information about their lived experiences Hybrid Spaces: Daughter/Researcher Heightened responsibility to honour their narratives  Allow their diverse voices to be heard  Maintain context  Not allow for misinterpretation  Not allow for essentialist readings “ I write as someone who bears the label of ‘native’anthropologist and yet squirms uncomfortably under this essentializing tag … I argue for the enactment of hybridity in our texts …” (Narayan, 2003, 286) Kiran Narayan Postcolonial Perspective …. The postcolonial perspective resists the attempt at holistic forms  of social explanation, it forces a recognition of the more complex cultural and political boundaries that exist on the cusps of these often political spheres [between 3rd and 1st worlds] (bhabha, 1994, p. 173) Where does this leave us? - Need for reflexivity - To explore how we are located in the research process - Our relationships with our informants - To explore how we influence qualitative research narratives Thank You!


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