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Understanding a Dispute About Ethnomethodology: Watson and Sharrock's Response to Atkinson's "Critical Review"

Hammersley, Martyn (2019). Understanding a Dispute About Ethnomethodology: Watson and Sharrock's Response to Atkinson's "Critical Review". Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 20(1), article no. 1.

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Since its emergence, ethnomethodology has been subject to a succession of disputes, prompted both by external commentaries and by internal divisions. Often, the external commentaries have been rejected as displaying gross misconceptions about the character of ethnomethodology, and these misconceptions have frequently been all too evident. In this article I examine a less well-known case where the external commentary—a "critical review" by Paul ATKINSON—displayed considerable understanding of, and indeed appreciation for, ethnomethodological work; albeit alongside some criticism, and an argument for the fruitfulness of combining elements of ethnography and ethnomethodology. It also connected with some disputes internal to ethnomethodology. The response to this review was, nevertheless, sharp rejection. This was on the grounds that ethnomethodology is fundamentally different from the "constructive analysis" characteristic of conventional ethnography, and qualitative research more generally. The arguments on each side make this a particularly illuminating dispute.

Item Type: Journal Item
Copyright Holders: 2019 The Author
ISSN: 1438-5627
Keywords: ethnomethodology; ethnography; perspectivism; incommensurability
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies (WELS)
Item ID: 60902
Depositing User: ORO Import
Date Deposited: 03 May 2019 10:20
Last Modified: 08 May 2019 02:24
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