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The vulnerable observer: Fear, sufferings and boundary crossing

Zhang, Yunpeng (2014) The vulnerable observer: Fear, sufferings and boundary crossing. Field Research Method Lab Blog (04 Apr 2014). Website.

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In this contribution, Yunpeng Zhang responds to an earlier post by Qin Shao (see Building Trust and Boundary: Fieldwork in Shanghai) to provoke discussions on the dilemma and ethics of observing, witnessing and writing about vulnerable people. Challenging the ‘boundary’ setting efforts in researching contentious topics and in working with such people, Yunpeng reflects upon his own fieldwork research on Shanghai’s Expo-induced domicide, relating in particular to an episode that revolted his own subjectivity and agency. It is suggested that we take a radical path that views ourselves not as academic professionals but as persons with a particular set of knowledge, and that this way of thinking pushes us to ponder our civic and intellectual responsibilities for the people not as research subjects but as fellow citizens, writes Yunpeng Zhang.

Item Type: Online resource (Website)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2014 The Author(s)
Divisions: LSE
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
Date Deposited: 09 Jun 2017 11:29
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 07:43

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