Friday, 12 February 2010

Limits on coding field data

Silverman warns that using a coding scheme is both a way of seeing the data and a way of not seeing the data because
"it deflects attention away from uncategorised activities."
It's a bit worrying that you get stuck seeing something one way, and can't change the perspective. Silverman also cites Sacks' warning about characterisation of data too quickly because we assume
"that we can know [such categories are accurate] without an analysis of what it is [members] are doing." (1992, vol 1: 429)
I know this from trying to code my data into categories that bleed into each other and overlap.

Silverman, D. 2005. Doing Qualitative Research : A Practical Handbook (2nd ed.). London ; Thousand Oaks, Calif.: Sage Publications.

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