Representation as politics: asserting a feminist ethic in ethnographic research

Sarah Leaney, Rebecca Webb

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    As ethnographers we are familiar with methodological debates problematising ethnography's inherited and inherent connections to ideas of authenticity commonly mobilised to legitimate modes of representation. In this paper, we engage with the post-structural philosophies of Jacques Rancière and Judith Butler, to argue that methodological tools of representation are always ‘political’ and as such shape the limitations of what can be known. In order to trace the overlapping methodological foundations which inform our ethnographic representations, we introduce three paradigmatic constructions of ethnography. By paying attention to the ways in which our ethnographic representations mark the perceptibility of educational practices and purposes, we assert a feminist ethic through the representation of the ‘livable life’ as a productive methodological provocation.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)44-59
    JournalEthnography and Education
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2 Feb 2020

    Bibliographical note

    This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis Group in Ethnography and Education on 02/02/2020, available online:


    • Post-structural ethnography
    • Politics
    • Representation
    • Feminist ethic
    • Livable life
    • feminist ethic
    • politics
    • livable lives
    • representation


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