On Becoming "White" Through Ethnographic Fieldwork in Ghana: Are ideas imperial by course?

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Scholarly level: 
Graduate student (PhD)
Final version published as: 

Nabbali, E. M. (2016). On Becoming "White" through Ethnographic Fieldwork in Ghana: Are ideas imperial by course? Language, Discourse, & Society, 4(1), 83-110. Retrieved from http://www.language-and-society.org/journal/4-1/5_Nabbali.pdf

 

Date created: 
2016
Keywords: 
Ethnography, colonialism, biopolitics, identity, Mad Pride
Abstract: 

Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork in Ghana, and the growing number of studies on “sanism” (or psychiatric oppression), this paper revisits outstanding methodological concerns around privilege and power, body and space, language and the liminality of social categories, as a platform to reconsider the insider/outsider debate. It ponders openly, and hopefully collectively, the implications of expanding research interests, so, too, the very circulation of ideas, against what the author is analytically describing as the experience of becoming “White.” The article focuses on questions that fieldwork exposed about researcher identity and “belonging,” not least the risk of essentialism. In effect, it seeks to demonstrate the ethical and epistemological dilemmas that arise from giving account, toward a more sensitive way in academia, relationship building, and solidarity work—where, when, how, or whether, critical ethnography can relinquish, reimagine, or altogether transform its dialectical tensions without undermining ends of resistance?

Language: 
English
Document type: 
Article
Rights: 
You are free to copy, distribute and transmit this work under the following conditions: You must give attribution to the work (but not in any way that suggests that the author endorses you or your use of the work); You may not use this work for commercial purposes; You may not alter, transform, or build upon this work. Any further uses require the permission of the rights holder (or author if no rights holder is listed). These rights are based on the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License.
Statistics: