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Generating data: studying identity politics from a bottom–up approach in Crimea and Moldova

Knott, Eleanor ORCID: 0000-0002-9131-3939 (2015) Generating data: studying identity politics from a bottom–up approach in Crimea and Moldova. East European Politics and Societies, 29 (2). pp. 467-486. ISSN 0888-3254

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Identification Number: 10.1177/0888325415584047

Abstract

This article argues that bottom–up, people-centered research which uses ethnographic and everyday approaches is crucial but underutilized in research on identity politics in Eastern Europe. In order to understand what concepts such as ethnicity and citizenship mean in the context of people’s everyday lives, it is vital to understand whether takenfor- granted political concepts are appropriate and the make-up of data such as census data. The article first introduces the methods of political ethnography and bottom–up interviews by discussing how they can be applied and their value within political science. The paper uses data gathered from interviews in Moldova and Crimea (when it was still a de jure and de facto part of Ukraine) to demonstrate the value of this approach. It shows how interview data can add significantly to the understanding of kin-state relations within political science by adding a richness of context and a bottom–up perspective that quantitative and elite-level interviews fail to provide. Lastly, the paper draws on experiences gained from research design to discuss how bottom–up research in political science can be conducted rigorously. The article argues that this approach can deepen the understanding of identity politics and kin-state relations or, more broadly, important post-communist questions such as democratization and Europeanization.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: http://eeps.sagepub.com
Additional Information: © 2015 Sage Publications
Divisions: Government
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe)
Sets: Departments > Government
Date Deposited: 28 Jul 2015 09:57
Last Modified: 20 May 2019 01:49
Funders: Economic and Social Research Council
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/62818

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