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27-31 August 2019
Poznań, Poland
Europe/Warsaw timezone
programme last update: 23 August 2019
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Contribution Paper

Poznań, Poland - Morasko Kampus, room: 2.103

Ethnography and Research-Creation: Cross-Disciplinary Pollination


  • Dr. Rajat NAYYAR

Primary authors



The aim of this presentation is to explore and strengthen the linkages between collaborative research-creation methods and “imaginative ethnography” (Elliott and Culhane 2017), as these are practised within performance studies and anthropology. Research-creation uses performance and its creation as collaborative, participatory, embodied, and improvisational approaches to knowing (Arlander et al. 2017; Riley and Hunter 2009). Imaginative ethnography draws upon ethnography, anthropology, and the arts to facilitate creative and embodied constructions of ethnographic knowledge and its representation. In recent years, imaginative ethnography has grown in popularity within performance studies (Kazubowski-Houston and Magnat 2018), while research-creation has gained cachet within anthropology and its cognate fields. Cross-disciplinary borrowings and refashionings have produced significant synergy between these methodological approaches. We still are in need, however, of an inter/transdisciplinary dialogue on the epistemological, methodological, and theoretical implications of this cross-pollination between ethnography and research-creation, both for performance studies and anthropology. This presentation initiates a dialogue about how ethnographic research-creation, as an emerging field of critical and creative inquiry, can facilitate spaces for collaborative, participatory, and imaginative ethnographic “circles of conversation” among researchers, participants, and audience members. Engaging with multidisciplinary research modalities—performance, photography, using video and audiotaping in interviews, sensory ethnography, and participant observation—the presenters will consider how an improvisatory politics of resistance may be anchored in spaces where performance and ethnography collide (Denzin 2003). This presentation will involve a ten-minute discussion followed by a five-minute audio-visual presentation.