Performing Research

Performing Research : Tensions, Triumphs and Trade-offs of Ethnodrama

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Ethnographic performance has been enthusiastically embraced by qualitative researchers as a powerful way to bring a research report to life, especially in the fields of education, health and community studies, where it is being increasingly employed in research and post-graduate training. Most accounts are of successful projects and barely acknowledge the complex problem at the heart of ethnodrama. In blending the demands of research with the aesthetic of theatre and other agendas like education or therapy, it is inevitably compromised: choices and trade-offs are constantly made. In this book, the authors explore the paradoxes of the form - and its usefulness and appeal. Five groups of researcher/performers have bravely offered their projects up for critical examination to provide case studies for the book. "Performing Research" is valuable and thought-provoking reading for qualitative researchers looking for innovative and imaginative ways of presenting research and engaging with communities in its reporting. It is essential reading for anybody thinking of using live or theatrical methods of reporting more

Product details

  • Paperback | 232 pages
  • 154.94 x 228.6 x 17.78mm | 317.51g
  • Institute of Education Press
  • Trentham Books Ltd
  • Stoke-on-Trent, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1858564468
  • 9781858564463
  • 544,618

Table of contents

CONTENTS: Acknowledgements; Contributors; Preface; 1. The human context: Who performs research and why?; Purposes; Respondents and witnesses; The points of view and requirements; But how much fun is it?; 2. Charting the territory: Ethnodrama and its close relations; The transience of labels; Terms and their implications for practice; The family tree; 3. Responsibilities: Social responsibility and social action; Ethics; 4. Ownership and power: Notions of authority, faithfulness and adaptation; Lack of participant homogeneity; Position and the selection of dialogue; Verbatim and characters; Beyond verbatim; Adaptation theory; Performance as reality or fiction; The gatekeepers and power; Other influences of power; Relationships between researcher and participant; 5. Aesthetic and other tensions: The elements of aesthetic form: Dialogue and fiction; Elements of aesthetic form: Mise-en-scene; Fictionalisation and authenticity; Other dramatic elements; Stylisation; Reader's theatre; Dramatic structure; Characters and acting; The commentator or 'researcher'; The paradox of ethnodrama; Conclusion; 6. Alice Hoy is not a building: Women in academia: Introduction; Questions and themes; The performance text; Generating data; Deep space; Performance-based data analysis; Workshop 1: Experimenting with data analysis; The performance text; Performing the play: Part one; As researchers we are also performing; Performing the play: Part two; Aesthetic decisions; Performing the play: Part three; Performing the play: Part four; Performing the play: Part five; Representing the researchers in performance; Performing the play: Part six; The audience; 7. Encounters in child care: Reducing complexity; Creation of characters; Discussion; 8. A Day in December: Introduction; The inciting event; The research project; Prior learning and the lure of the three act structure; Remembering Glenbrook: The structure; Remembering Glenbrook: The content; The Signals: The problematic chapter three; Finding a final turning point; A confrontation; The NIDA Short Course Program; The development of a rehearsal draft; Remembering A Day in December; A discovery; Verbatim theatre and the playwright's challenge; Conclusion: Learning from experience; 9. Scrap Pickers and other local Hong Kong projects: Fast tracking ethnodrama: A two-week assignment in Hong Kong: Introducing the case study; Section 1: The projects; The context of choice; Section 2: The Scrap Pickers project; Aims: Personal and social; The project plan; Pre-performance; Participants' critical reflections; Kate; Will; The relationship between education and research; The relationship between drama and research; The relationship between drama and educational purpose; 10. Performing histories: Voices of black rural community: From oral history to ethnodrama: The journey of the spoken word: Introduction; Stories and marginalised communities; The context of the initial research data and the project leaders; Authenticity and risks of reductionism; Artistic choices and tensions; Script development; Stakeholder interests; Closing reflections; 11. Investigating masculinities in school: It's a play for us: Ethnographic performance as part of an educational ethnography: Back story; Setting the scene; Dramatis personae; The production team: A collaborative approach; Ethical considerations; Prologue to the drama; A script is not the only way to tell a story; Limitations to the data; Sharing the emerging text: Entering into the dialogic; A matter of style and form; Negotiating the performance; The usefulness of ethnographic performance in a school setting; References; more

About Judith Ackroyd

John O'Toole is Chair of Arts Education at the University of Melbourne and Judith Ackroyd is Dean of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences at Regent's College, London. Both are internationally known drama researchers, educators and authors. The case study writers come from a contrasting range of education, health and community studies contexts in the UK, Australia and Hong more

Review quote

"Performing Research is highly recommended reading for all arts-based educational researchers, particularly those with a drama/theatre disciplinary focus.Ackroyd & O'Toole's text serves as excellent reading for courses in advanced qualitative research, narrative inquiry, theatre- in education and, of course, ethnodrama/performance ethnography." -- Johnny Saldana Arizona State University, International Journal of Education and the Artsshow more

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