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Ethical considerations of conducting ethnographic research in visually impaired communities

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This paper investigates the ethical difficulties in constructing a research methodology with which to study blind and visually impaired communities. The motivation for the study was the lack of ethnographic research into disabled communities. This paper includes a case study of an ethnographic investigation conducted by the author during 1993-95 into the arts education of a disabled community mostly composed of congenitally and early blind adults at Leicester University and of a wholly blind and visually impaired community within arts summer schools at Bristol University. The investigation in Leicester was mainly conducted in an arts studio connected to the university's Students' Union and a music studio in the university's arts tower. In contrast the investigation in Bristol was mainly conducted on field visits to museums, old houses and hill forts. The methods used in this case study is student centred ethnomethodology, and used participant and non-participant observation, interviews and audio taped reports by the students themselves.

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en

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http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/29526/

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