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On Being 'Irish': negotiating identity and the involvement-detachment balance in archival research

Liston, Katie/K and Maguire, Joseph (2016) On Being 'Irish': negotiating identity and the involvement-detachment balance in archival research. In: 9th International Conference on Social Science Methodology, Leicester. N/A. 16 pp. [Conference contribution]

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Abstract

This paper takes up the call from Rojek (and others) in the 1990s for greater attention to be paid to the actual practice of involvement-detachment in figurational / process research (Elias, 2007). Drawing on material from ongoing archival research on the involvement of ‘Ireland’ in the British Empire Games, the authors will first outline their own ‘established-outsider’ biographies. This is important in light of their insights that follow on the challenges of maintaining relative detachment while immersed in archival material dominated by the ideologies of Pax Britannia on the one hand and political and cultural nationalisms on the other. Here, the involvement-detachment balance has fluctuated during the search for ‘the smoking gun’. The paper also reflects on the role of secondary re-involvement and the satisfaction to be gained from the generation of a ‘relatively adequate’ reality-congruent picture of the past, albeit one that is inevitably shaped by that which is both present and absent in various archives and historical sources.

Item Type:Conference contribution (Paper)
Keywords:archival research, involvement-detachment, Irish, identity
Faculties and Schools:Faculty of Life and Health Sciences > School of Sport
Faculty of Life and Health Sciences
Research Institutes and Groups:Sport and Exercise Sciences Research Institute > Centre for Sport in Society
Sport and Exercise Sciences Research Institute
ID Code:36168
Deposited By: Dr Katie Liston
Deposited On:25 Oct 2016 08:28
Last Modified:17 Oct 2017 16:26

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