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In A Younger VoiceDoing Child-Centered Qualitative Research$
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Cindy Dell Clark

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780195376593

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195376593.001.0001

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Scissors and Kaleidoscope: Child-Centered Analysis

Scissors and Kaleidoscope: Child-Centered Analysis

(p.176) 7 Scissors and Kaleidoscope: Child-Centered Analysis
In A Younger Voice

Cindy Dell Clark

Oxford University Press

The challenge of interpretive inquiry with children does not end with fieldwork. Analysis involves making sense of ambiguous, intertwined and often non-literal encodings. Bits, pieces and constellations of meaning are the raw material for building synthetic, encompassing interpretations. Helpful tools lie in disciplined data management, with systematic organizing, coding and categorizing of field materials. In the course of sifting through clues as an inductive process, a unified explanation befitting the material is sought. This process is aided by: being systematic but flexible, being attentive to details, being intrigued by puzzles, being welcoming of risk, being untroubled by contradictions, and being playful and child-empathic. Findings and interpretations from children’s viewpoints have been known to meet with skepticism or dismissal by adult audiences. The manner in which an analyst conveys findings may need to seek, by design, greater adult respect for child-centered findings.

Keywords:   interpretive inquiry, qualitative analysis, interpretive synthesis, ambiguity in child-centered inquiry, adult response

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