Narrating Social Work Through Autoethnography
Autoethnography is an innovative approach to inquiry in which the researcher is also the subject of the research. Using scholarly and literary devices, the researcher/subject explores the social and cultural contexts of meaningful life experiences and their implications for the present.
Eschewing the restrictions of conventional research writing, autoethnography generates substantial and meaningful knowledge for social workers and professionals in related fields. Researchers describe social issues from the inside out, producing narratives that reflect the messy, experiential encounters of everyday life. This collection illustrates the value of autoethnography as an inquiry approach for social work practice and how it can provide substantive information about topics germane to social workers. Engaging and erudite, the selections demonstrate that accessible writing and the complex rendering of lived experiences can coexist and move readers in meaningful ways. Contributors showcase the ambiguities, doubts, contradictions, insights, tensions, and epiphanies that accompany their experiences. Covering such topics as international adoption, cross-dressing, divorce, cultural competence, life-threatening illness, and transformative change, this anthology provides a readable and unique example of an exciting new trend in qualitative research.