Reading Bourdieu: Changing practice

Marion Sanders


Amongst the complexities of Bourdieu’s writing, the author found a challenging gem related to interviewing as a researcher. Here Bourdieu’s focus on the underprivileged, the voiceless, was uncovered, leading to the author’s questioning of past practice and a desire to emulate some of the tenets and approaches suggested by Bourdieu. This article charts personal growth, through intentional, informed reflection, from objective interviewer to one who co-constructs data with those being interviewed. This process led to extending Bourdieu’s ideas about interviewing, to the use of talanoa as a research method when investigating the lived experience of several Tongan tertiary students studying at a small tertiary provider in New Zealand. The challenges of this more intimate, active and compassionate approach are outlined.

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DOI: 10.15663/wje.v19i1.60


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© Wilf Malcolm Institute of Educational Research, Te Kura Toi Tangata Faculty of Education, 2015