Pantomime and politics: the story of a performance ethnography

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7 Citations (Scopus)


The article looks at the alternative forms of knowledge that can be generated by a participatory, arts-based social research process. It draws on a project carried out with working-class women in the North West of England, UK, during the course of which a performance ethnography was developed depicting women’s experiences of motherhood and their interactions with a local Sure Start programme. The transcript of the play produced during the research process, The Wizard of Us, is interspersed here with discussion of how the research was carried out and the motives underlying the methodological approach taken. It looks at the extent to which a process involving stories, theatrics and ‘artifice’ can make claims of validity and authenticity and concludes by questioning the potential of the work to transform lives.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)36-52
JournalQualitative Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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