Reflections on Fieldwork

A Comparative Study of Positionality in Ethnographic Research across Asia

Farah Purwaningrum and Anastasiya Shtaltovna

The paper addresses the following question: how does positionality under divergent conditions (in restrictive or in friendly research
zones) facilitate or impede the qualitative research process? Ethnographic fieldwork was used to collect data. Two proxies of comparisons are used in examining the role of positionality, namely gender and insider-outsider in Central Asia (CA) and South East Asia (SEA). It is demonstrated that understanding one’s position in the field is vital to be able to consciously reflect and negotiate space for fieldwork.

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