Data collection is a major concern in studying violently divided societies. Challenges researchers encounter may dramatically affect reliable contributions to the field of polemology. This paper suggests a practical link between difficulties experienced in data gathering and the theoretical framework such that challenges can become a source of data in their own right; this makes the latter functional to a better understanding of the former. The research was based on ethnographic field work conducted in Northern Irish Protestant and Catholic enclaves during my doctoral studies. The research examined the long term legacy and perceptions of acts of self-immolation, which involved Republican prisoners who gave or attempted to give their life for a political cause in 1980-81. I maintain that what may appear as a socio-methodological problem can be viewed as a helpful component towards clarifying internal dynamics in deeply rooted ethnic conflicts when seen through the lens of participant observation, within ethno-graphically specific boundaries.

Challenges in Data Collection in a Violently Divided Society

MOLLICA, Marcello
2006

Abstract

Data collection is a major concern in studying violently divided societies. Challenges researchers encounter may dramatically affect reliable contributions to the field of polemology. This paper suggests a practical link between difficulties experienced in data gathering and the theoretical framework such that challenges can become a source of data in their own right; this makes the latter functional to a better understanding of the former. The research was based on ethnographic field work conducted in Northern Irish Protestant and Catholic enclaves during my doctoral studies. The research examined the long term legacy and perceptions of acts of self-immolation, which involved Republican prisoners who gave or attempted to give their life for a political cause in 1980-81. I maintain that what may appear as a socio-methodological problem can be viewed as a helpful component towards clarifying internal dynamics in deeply rooted ethnic conflicts when seen through the lens of participant observation, within ethno-graphically specific boundaries.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11570/3120326
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