Il genere sul campo: alcune riflessioni metodologiche
| STUDI DI SOCIOLOGIA - 2009 - 2
The Phenomenology says that every knowledge is a perspective knowledge, because every
knowledge is situated in a time and in a space. The human’s embodiment discloses a perspective
overview on the world. The paper claims the aim to analyze how the sexual and gender
dimensions, which are incarnated in a determinate body, are present in the qualitative research,
specifically into the ethnographic observation. First for all, we hypothesize that the gender is a
border for the access into a field and not in other, so to be man or woman is not neutral for the
knowledge of a specific social context. Moreover, the performative dimension of the gender,
which shows the norms that pre-exist and that conduct the role’s interaction (i.e. the role’s gendered
content and the role’s gendered language) is another tie in the participant observation.
The awareness that all the knowledge is gendered, requires to the fieldworker to play a double
competence (ability). The researcher must use the self reflexivity to point out his gender identity
and his background on this theme: he must point out his background frame relatively to the
gender, his gender behaviour’s expectations in the interaction, and his correlated opinions. The
researcher, moreover, must know that exist a cultural mainstream about the gender, but that the
concrete gender playing is based on the interaction in a concrete frame. So, we have a lot of
concrete ways in which the gender is embodied. The researcher on the field, so, must enter in a
knowledge’s circulation in which must point attention to: the epistemic interdependence, i.e.
the knowledge borns in the symbolic interaction between the researcher and the subject; the
gendered nature of the communicative interaction between the researcher and the subject; the
negotiable nature of the concrete managing of the gendered role in the interaction.