Researcher-participant positioning and the discursive work of categories

experiences from fieldwork in the mental health services

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

    Abstract

    This paper reports on methodological experiences from an ethnographic study in
    psychiatric institutions in Denmark. Drawing on a poststructural framework and newer discussions within qualitative research that view methodological problems as sources of data, the paper analyzes how the challenges encountered in the fieldwork were indicative of discursive norms within the mental health services. It is argued that the multiple ways the researcher was positioned by participants revealed that the categories “patient” and “staff” were produced as polarized binaries with little leverage for negotiating positions in between. At the same time, it is shown that the patients find ways to resist the objectifying practices of the researcher as well as of the mental health services. The conclusions are discussed against recent attempts within the mental health services to promote a more patient-centered approach and involve patients in the treatment.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalQualitative studies
    Volume4
    Issue number1
    ISSN1903-7031
    Publication statusPublished - 2013

    Cite this

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    title = "Researcher-participant positioning and the discursive work of categories: experiences from fieldwork in the mental health services",
    abstract = "This paper reports on methodological experiences from an ethnographic study inpsychiatric institutions in Denmark. Drawing on a poststructural framework and newer discussions within qualitative research that view methodological problems as sources of data, the paper analyzes how the challenges encountered in the fieldwork were indicative of discursive norms within the mental health services. It is argued that the multiple ways the researcher was positioned by participants revealed that the categories “patient” and “staff” were produced as polarized binaries with little leverage for negotiating positions in between. At the same time, it is shown that the patients find ways to resist the objectifying practices of the researcher as well as of the mental health services. The conclusions are discussed against recent attempts within the mental health services to promote a more patient-centered approach and involve patients in the treatment.",
    keywords = "qualitative methods, researcher positioning, field relations, ethnography, mental health",
    author = "Agnes Ringer",
    year = "2013",
    language = "English",
    volume = "4",
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    Researcher-participant positioning and the discursive work of categories : experiences from fieldwork in the mental health services. / Ringer, Agnes.

    In: Qualitative studies, Vol. 4, No. 1, 2013.

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - Researcher-participant positioning and the discursive work of categories

    T2 - experiences from fieldwork in the mental health services

    AU - Ringer, Agnes

    PY - 2013

    Y1 - 2013

    N2 - This paper reports on methodological experiences from an ethnographic study inpsychiatric institutions in Denmark. Drawing on a poststructural framework and newer discussions within qualitative research that view methodological problems as sources of data, the paper analyzes how the challenges encountered in the fieldwork were indicative of discursive norms within the mental health services. It is argued that the multiple ways the researcher was positioned by participants revealed that the categories “patient” and “staff” were produced as polarized binaries with little leverage for negotiating positions in between. At the same time, it is shown that the patients find ways to resist the objectifying practices of the researcher as well as of the mental health services. The conclusions are discussed against recent attempts within the mental health services to promote a more patient-centered approach and involve patients in the treatment.

    AB - This paper reports on methodological experiences from an ethnographic study inpsychiatric institutions in Denmark. Drawing on a poststructural framework and newer discussions within qualitative research that view methodological problems as sources of data, the paper analyzes how the challenges encountered in the fieldwork were indicative of discursive norms within the mental health services. It is argued that the multiple ways the researcher was positioned by participants revealed that the categories “patient” and “staff” were produced as polarized binaries with little leverage for negotiating positions in between. At the same time, it is shown that the patients find ways to resist the objectifying practices of the researcher as well as of the mental health services. The conclusions are discussed against recent attempts within the mental health services to promote a more patient-centered approach and involve patients in the treatment.

    KW - qualitative methods

    KW - researcher positioning

    KW - field relations

    KW - ethnography

    KW - mental health

    M3 - Journal article

    VL - 4

    JO - Qualitative studies

    JF - Qualitative studies

    SN - 1903-7031

    IS - 1

    ER -