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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:From data problems to data points: challenges and opportunities of research in postgenocide Rwanda
Author:King, Elisabeth
Periodical:African Studies Review (ISSN 1555-2462)
Geographic term:Rwanda
professional ethics
history education
External link:http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/african_studies_review/v052/52.3.king.pdf
Abstract:While interest in conducting fieldwork in conflict and postconflict societies continues to grow, literature addressing the specific challenges and dilemmas of this kind of research remains scarce. Based on four months of fieldwork and approximately seventy interviews, this article explores the complexities of conducting research in postgenocide Rwanda. The author argues that what at first may appear to be data problems can also be important data points; problems such as historical memory, selective telling, and skewed participant demographics illuminate political structures, group relations, and societal cleavages. The article then illustrates this argument by examining how these challenges/opportunities help explain the difficulties involved in teaching history in postgenocide schools. These reflections on research in Rwanda suggest valuable lessons for fieldwork and data analysis in a number of settings by providing examples of pitfalls, dilemmas, and often unseen opportunities that are likely to present themselves in other divided societies. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]