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Humanizing Research

Humanizing Research
Decolonizing Qualitative Inquiry With Youth and Communities

Edited by:
  • Django Paris - Washington University, Seattle, USA
  • Maisha T. Winn - University of California, Davis, USA, University of Wisconsin - Madison, USA

February 2013 | 304 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

*Winner of the 2015 Outstanding Book Award from the American Educational Research Association’s Qualitative Research Special Interest Group (SIG).*

What does it mean to conduct research for justice with youth and communities who are marginalized by systems of inequality based on race, ethnicity, sexuality, citizenship status, gender, and other categories of difference? In this collection, editors Django Paris and Maisha Winn have selected essays written by top scholars in education on humanizing approaches to qualitative and ethnographic inquiry with youth and their communities. Vignettes, portraits, narratives, personal and collaborative explorations, photographs, and additional data excerpts bring the findings to life for a better understanding of how to use research for positive social change.

Part I: Trust, Feeling, and Change: What We Learn, What We Share, What We Do
Daysi Strong, Maria Duarte, Christina Gomez, Eric Meiners
Chapter 1: Too Close to the Work/There is Nothing Right Now
Valerie Kinloch, Timothy San Pedro
Chapter 2: The Space Between: Listening and Story-ing as Foundations for Projects in Humanization (PiH)
Mollie Blackburn
Chapter 3: Conducting Humanizing Research with LGBTQQ Youth through Dialogic Communication, Consciousness Raising, and Action
Part II: Navigating Institutions and Communities as Participatory Activist Researchers: Tensions, Possibilities, and Transformations
Jason Irizarry, Tara Brown
Chapter 4: Humanizing Research in Dehumanizing Spaces: The Challenges of Conducting Participatory Action Research with Youth in Schools
Teresa L. McCarty, Leisy T. Wyman, Sheilah E. Nichols
Chapter 5: Activist Ethnography with Indigenous Youth--Lessons from Humanizing Research on Language and Education
Korina Jocson
Chapter 6: Critical Media Ethnography: Youth Media Research
Part III: The Complex Nature of Power, Relationships, and Responsibilities
Ariana Mangual Figueroa
Chapter 7: La Carta de Responsabilidad: The Problem of Exiting the Field
Keisha Green
Chapter 8: Critical A Double-Dutch Methodology: A Kinetic Approach to Qualitative Educational Research
Eunice Romero-Little, Christine Sims, A-Dae Romero
Chapter 9: Revisiting the Keres Study: Learning from the Past to Engage Indigenous Youth, Elders and Teachers in Intergenerational Collaborative Research and Praxis
Part IV: Revisiting Old Conversations toward New Approaches in Humanizing Research
David E. Kirkland
Chapter 10: The Ethnographic Method in Educational Research: Why I Study Culture, and Why It Matters
Mariana Souto-Manning
Chapter 11: Critical for Whom?: Theoretical and Methodological Dilemmas in Critical Approaches to Language Reseach
Eve Tuck, K. Wayne Yang
Chapter 12: R-words: Refusing Research
Maisha Winn
Epilogue: Reflecting Forward on Humanizing Approaches

“The text is written in an engaging, conversational tone and presents powerful stories that will connect with students and others interested in empowering under-represented groups (focused on adolescents/youth) through community based research.”

Susan Letvak
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro

“This text is a rich repository, covers wide variety of oppressed research participants and a must read for emerging and valuable sub-field of humanizing research within qualitative research paradigm.”

Shailesh Shukla
Department of Indigenous Studies, University of Winnipeg

“I find it to be an overall excellent addition to the conversation on humanizing qualitative research and in general on the conversation on Critical Qualitative Research and its possible directions for development.”

Patricio R. Ortiz
Utah State University, Department of Education

This book has helped me to introduce the subject of colonization and how research has been used to classify and denigrate non-white peoples and non-Western cultures.

Humanities Fine Arts Dept, Front Range Community College
February 17, 2015

Humanizing Research is an excellent text for researchers at any level (undergraduate and graduate students, as well as emerging scholars and community researchers). I found the book to be accessible to students who may be engaging in social science and qualitative research for the first time. The reflection questions at the end of each chapter are also ideal for class discussions and individual reflection writing assignments. The text pairs well with itself digital texts (i.e., videos, social media, etc.) and additional articles that address issues of ethics, reciprocity, and responsibility.

Dr Tamara Butler
English Dept, Michigan State University
January 2, 2015

The chapters are great individually, but not all of them applied to all students in this particular class.

Dr Janet Johnson
Educational Studies Dept, Rhode Island College
October 7, 2014

Interesting focus, too specilized for the majority of students, more used as background literature for the teachers

Dr Lmm Houweling
Instituut voor Ecologische Pedagogiek, Hogeschool Utrecht
September 9, 2013

An imortant text in understanding different approaches to undertaking qualitative research

Dr Mark Malisa
School Of Education, College of St Rose
August 22, 2013

I should recommend this text for those working in public and not-for-profit contexts

Ms Hazel Messenger
Business School, London Metropolitan Uni (North Campus)
June 17, 2013
Key features


  • This volume introduces readers to cutting-edge scholars’ research methodologies that are interdisciplinary in nature.
  • Each chapter raises critical questions for emerging researchers/scholars to grapple with that will be appropriate for research methods courses.
  • Chapters provide vignettes, portraits, narratives, personal and collaborative explorations, and photographs, and additional data excerpts bring the research methods to life for a better understanding of how to use research for positive social change.
  • Each chapter focuses on how to do research with youth and communities who are marginalized by systems of inequality base on race, ethnicity, language, sexuality, citizenship status, and gender.

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