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An Exploration of the Basis and Implications of My Insider Ethnographic Status

By: Published: 2018 | Product: SAGE Research Methods Cases Part 2
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I discuss my experiences of ethnographically researching masculinity in a public gymnasium (Gym D). I demonstrate how—through my class-based, gendered, ethnic, and embodied identity—I was able to adopt an insider ethnographic position when researching male users of Gym D. I consider the implications of the insider position I took on from an analytic and ethical point of view. My experiences of researching Gym D amount to a case study for others to consider when reflecting on how their own identity as an ethnographer may impact their relationships with participants in the field and, concurrently, the sort of data they access and the ethicality of the relationships they forge during the ethnographic process.

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Participant observation

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