Whose interested methods-wise? Perhaps more so in: Ethnography (in the doing and the analysis) Active listening (in the doing) Empowerment (in the planning and the doing) Participatory Research (in the planning, not in the analysis) Oral histories (in the planning, the doing and the analysis) Perhaps less so in: Institutional ethnography Grounded theory Autoethnography (?) Autobiography (?)
Why look at silence? Insight into phenomenon Anomaly in the information/data Truth Access to the world of taken for grantedness Something doesn’t sit right …
Types of silence Lack of information Result of marginalization Absence of something expected The ‘hegemony’ … Evasions, diversions: ratio
Truths 1 – Title of journal article 2 – Ding Ling’s short stories 3 – Bree from Desperate Housewives 4 – Absence of queer subjects 5 – Enlightened disciple
Analysis Small life-history project on mothers and daughters Interview-based project with Irish women diagnosed with Myalgic encephalopathy Textual investigation of two categories of illness over time
What do you do when you know something is ‘true’ but it isn’t there?
Áisling Mid 20s Teacher prior to onset of ME Housebound for about 18 months Lives with her parents in a farmhouse in a central county Spends extended periods of time with other supportive family members and friends Focused more on space but in a slightly different way: she tried to control what comes into her immediate social and physical spaces so that she can attend to her body.
Mary Early 40s Physical labourer prior to onset of ME Housebound for 11 years Lives with her father in a farmhouse in the west Has a personal assistant for two hours a day to help her with her meal preparation, bathing, and tidying Told me about the extensive measures put into place around the house so that being housebound became less problematic, especially in times of crisis.
Mary Altered the water supply system to ensure a more reliable supply Installed stop cocks for shutting off water pipes in living area of the house Fitted indicator light so that water pump can be monitored from indoors Packed rations of food, soft drinks and fresh water upstairs alongside overnight bag for emergencies Mounted an on/off switch and extension cord near the bed so that TV, computer, electric kettle and toaster can be turned on and off from the bed Learned computer to make research possible through internet and email Keeps phone and touch sensitive light at bed side Has front door key always upstairs in a basket in the sill in her room
What can we say with what we’ve got when we know there’s so much more?