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Questioning Qualitative Inquiry
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Questioning Qualitative Inquiry
Critical Essays



July 2008 | 216 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
Is qualitative research in crisis?

In Questioning Qualitative Inquiry Martin Hammersley argues that the move away from natural science as a model for social inquiry involves a rejection of key principles that are essential for any commitment to research.

Discussing fifty years of change in qualitative social research, Martyn Hammersley's argument is pursued in concrete terms through discussion of specific issues, such as:

- how to learn from the history of qualitative inquiry

- can qualitative methodology be taught

- the significance of researchers' commitment to tolerance

- the role of rhetoric in research reports

- the attitudes of qualitative researchers towards theory, evidence and validity.

A key theme is the current emphasis on discursive rather than social action as the focus of study, and the implications of this not just for the process of analysis but also for the use of various kinds of data.

At a time when qualitative inquiry is coming under challenge, as a result of pressure to serve evidence-based policymaking and practice, these issues are becoming increasingly pressing. These often provocative essays on current developments and debates are essential reading for anyone interested in the future of qualitative research.

 
Introduction
Dentists, Dadaists or Discourse Analysts?

 
 
On the Failings of Qualitative Inquiry
 
Capturing Complexity? An Examination of a Common Rationale for Qualitative Research
 
On Thick Description
Interpreting Geertz

 
 
The Critical Case of Analytic Induction
with Roger Gomm
Assessing the Radical Critique of Interviews
 
Conversation Analysis and Discourse Analysis
Methods or Paradigms?

 
 
The Dadaist Alternative
"Postmodernist" Qualitative Research

 
 
Is Qualitative Research Just Rhetoric?
 
Validity Criteria for Qualitative Research
Are They Possible or even Desirable?

 

'Written in Hammersley's usual considered style and is pitched perfectly for post-graduate students, and teachers of advanced methods courses but alos for early career researchers still unclear of which direction they face within the contemporary landscape and proliferarting 'schools' of qualitative research' -
Rob Smith,
Cardiff University, for Qualitative Research


'Questioning Qualitative Inquiry is essential reading for both post-graduate student confronted by overwhelming methodological pluralism and the established scholar sitting comfortably in their ontological comfort-zone'
L. da Costa & Sam Hillyard, ,
Durham University, for Qualitative Research


'The critiques in Hammersley’s collection of essays have an even-handed rigour. Analyses of different approaches to developing knowledge about the social move between the nitty-gritty of method and exegetical discussion of philosophies behind different approaches'
Anita Naoko Pilgrim
University of Glamorgan for Qualitative Research

Sample Materials & Chapters

Introduction PDF

Chapter One PDF


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Martyn Hammersley

Martyn Hammersley is an emeritus professor of educational and social research at The Open University, UK. He has carried out research in the sociology of education and the sociology of the media. However, much of his work has been concerned with the methodological issues surrounding social enquiry. He has written several books including (with Paul Atkinson) Ethnography: Principles in Practice (fourth edition, Routledge, 2019), The Dilemma of Qualitative Method (Routledge, 1989), The Politics of Social Research (SAGE, 1995), Reading Ethnographic Research (second edition, Longman, 1997), Taking Sides in Social Research (Routledge, 2000),... More About Author

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ISBN: 9781412935159
£35.99 

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