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Creating Autoethnographies

Creating Autoethnographies

  • Tessa Muncey - University of Leeds, UK, Homerton School of Health Studies

April 2010 | 168 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd

Creating Autoethnographies is an introduction to autoethnography, a form of autobiographical personal narrative that explores the writer's experience of life. The first ever practical text on this increasingly popular research method, it provides a background and considers some of the criticisms of the approach. It is suitable for all social science students, both graduate and upper level undergraduate.

The book is structured to mirror the process of writing about experience, from establishing an idea through to the process of writing and the development of creative writing skills, and provides detailed worked examples of the whole process. The final two chapters are devoted to exploring two cases in which readers can see the principles discussed in action. There are also a wide range of case studies drawn from a wide a range of social science disciplines and exercises throughout the text

In the book, Tessa Muncey identifies a number of trends in social science research, such as the increasing focus on the individual and giving a voice to service users, that are resulting in an increase of interest in narrative research. Creating Autoethnographies is a timely contribution to the field.

Why Do Autoethnography: Discovering the Individual in Research
Personal Worlds: Discovering the Constituent Parts of the Individual
What is Autoethnography: Making Sense of Individual Experience
Planning an Autoethnographic Account
Making Sense of Autoethnographic Texts: Legitimacy, Truth and Memory
A Complete Autoethnographic Account
The Autoethnographic Process: Starting a New Story

This is a clear and straightforward book which I will recommend to my students who decide to take an auto/biographical approach to their research project which culminates in a 50 - 70,000 word dissertation. Students on the EdD vary in the research approach they take but auto/biography is popular because of my own predilections and the fact that they hear a lot (during the taught component of their course) about auto/ethnography and life history and so on. I have previously directed them to Carolyn Ellis' work - which some like and some hate. This book is far more anodyne and is (in my view) more of a 'how to'. My students are in the Caribbean. I do think that the book fails to say anything about what could be described as the decolonising project (and there is a very western slant to it) but my students are well used to that and make their own critical readings.

Professor Pat Sikes
School of Education, Sheffield University
May 7, 2010

This is a useful book, a very appealing, clear and accessible guide.

Mr Nick Pollard
Faculty of Health and Wellbeing, Sheffield Hallam University
April 26, 2010

An interesting text that adds to material on reflexivity and ethnography. Nicely pitched between the two with good practical suggestions.

Dr Peter Thomas
Strategy & Innovation, Central Lancashire University
April 21, 2010

This is a specialist book but one that I will recommend for our library and to any students writing an autoethnographic dissertation which a small number of our students choose to do. I also see its value for students writing critically and analytically about their own practice in a variety of contexts.

Dr Sally Nash
Youth, Midlands Centre for Youth Ministry
April 20, 2010

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter One

Chapter Two

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ISBN: 9781847874733
ISBN: 9781847874726

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