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Partisanship and positionality in qualitative research: Exploring the influences of the researcher’s experiences of serious crime on the research process / Melissa Mendez

Qualitative Research, Start page: 146879412110161

Swansea University Author: Melissa Mendez

Abstract

Debates on positionality and partisanship in the research process are long-standing, complex and often highly contentious. Engaging with, and contributing to both these key debates, this paper introduces the concept of victim-as-researcher. There is a growing body of literature which engages with pa...

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Published in: Qualitative Research
ISSN: 1468-7941 1741-3109
Published: SAGE Publications 2021
Online Access: Check full text

URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa56755
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Abstract: Debates on positionality and partisanship in the research process are long-standing, complex and often highly contentious. Engaging with, and contributing to both these key debates, this paper introduces the concept of victim-as-researcher. There is a growing body of literature which engages with participatory research undertaken with victims of crime. Nevertheless, there is a paucity of literature which speaks to the experiences of victims of serious, violent crime who subsequently engage in qualitative research with offenders who have been convicted of offences similar to the ones experienced by the researcher and which, therefore, can elicit trauma whilst in the field and through analysis. In reflecting on the dilemmas and challenges navigated by the victim-as-researcher seeking to produce an authentic, appreciative account that foregrounds the voices of offenders and seeks to humanise them, this paper engages with a number of key issues including, emotional labour, victimology and reflexivity. Following this discussion of relevant concepts and ideas, the second part of the paper focusses on practical tips to help others who share a positionality as victim-as-researcher. Thus, this paper aims to extend the literature on positionality and victimology by foregrounding the victim-as-researcher as an important category in reflexive sociological and criminological research.
Keywords: Qualitative interviews, Victim-as-researcher, Victimology, Reflexivity, Positionality, Partisanship, Emotional labour
College: Hillary Rodham Clinton School of Law
Start Page: 146879412110161