201.3 A research-documentary project on experiences of racism

Thursday, August 2, 2012: 9:30 AM
Faculty of Economics, TBA
Oral Presentation
Rudolf LEIPRECHT , Faculty of Educational and Social Sciences, Center for Migration, Education and Cultural Studies (CMC), Carl-von-Ossietzky University, Oldenburg, Germany
„If they do not want to listen“ – A research-documentary project on young people’s experiences and views of (racist) discrimination

The subject matter of the presentation is a research-documentary project which deals with discrimination experiences of young people in Germany and the reaction of various groups to the screening of the film. The discrimination experiences are deployed in the context of social inequality and the subject positions are marked by intersecting categories of social positioning  (race, ethnicity, class, gender, generation, etc.).

The research is characterized by a specific design: The data collection took place in two phases: first, interviews and group discussions were conducted with 15 young people, followed by an interim analysis on the basis of which a documentary was produced (25 min, English subtitles). The film is both, an intermediate in the research process and a means for further research. In the second research phase the film is used as a focus for group discussions and interviews with other young people in schools and youth centres, and with educational professionals (teachers, youth workers).

The presentation shows how with the help of a documentary the voices of young people can be made audible. In the production process of the documentary questions need to be asked concerning the following keywords: self-determination, data compression, ‘authenticity’ and the ability to endure the public impact of the screening. It is clear that the motives of the young people who participate in the film, and the reactions of teachers and youth workers about this film are quite different. While for the young participants this contrast is often a disappointment, for the researcher it is a gain on the basis of which new data are generated and the analysis leads to interesting results; here, however, new questions concerning research ethics arise.