Autoethnography as ‘valid’ methodology? A study of disrupted identity narratives


Allen-Collinson, J. and Hockey, J., 2008. Autoethnography as ‘valid’ methodology? A study of disrupted identity narratives. The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, 3 (6), pp. 209-218.

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Despite its burgeoning popularity in recent years, autoethnography is still considered a contentious, even a ‘self-indulgent’ genre, at least within some quarters of the social sciences, where it is viewed as more akin to ‘navel-gazing’ autobiography than to rigorous social scientific research. This article considers some of the advantages and challenges of working with a variation of the genre – a collaborative autoethnography. Our research project examined from a sociological perspective disrupted athletic identities occasioned by long-term sporting injuries. Whilst not a narrative analysis per se, we examine here some of the narratives (spoken and written) co-produced during the process of injury and rehabilitation. Such narrative activity facilitated sense-making at the phenomenological, interactional and analytic levels, and helped counteract the threat of identity disruption caused by long-term, serious injury. The article considers the potential of the autoethnograhic approach for providing unique insights into lived-body experiences, and concludes with a discussion of just some of the ethical issues arising from this methodological approach.


Item Type Articles
CreatorsAllen-Collinson, J.and Hockey, J.
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DepartmentsFaculty of Humanities & Social Sciences > Education
ID Code22633


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