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Critical Ethnography in the New Climate Regime: Research as Index

Sun, April 11, 9:30 to 10:30am EDT (9:30 to 10:30am EDT), SIG Sessions, SIG-Qualitative Research Roundtable Sessions


Critical ethnographic practices in education have historically operated within a particular political orientation framed by the logic of Western Enlightenment. This gives rise to a paternalistic analysis, where those whose actions do not accord with their supposedly objective interests are in need of pedagogical correction. This political framework is reproductive of our problematic modernity, and critical ethnography is in need of a different politics. One possibility lies in Bruno Latour’s concept of Climate Regimes, which both diagnoses the failures of the politics described above, and provides the conditions for doing politics differently. Drawing from Peirce’s triadic semiotics, I reframe the political aim of critical ethnographic research as index, pointing to heterogeneous ontologies and orienting collectives towards novel political attractors.