[URBANTH-L]RE: a question concerning methods/ethics

Lawless, Robert robert.lawless at wichita.edu
Thu Jul 30 09:31:10 EDT 2009

Don't do it. The informant may not realize what use could be made of the published item. Ethics require that you protect your informants; they are not in charge of your ethics. It's your "book, article whatever," and you have the final say in this matter.

-----Original Message-----
From: urbanth-l-bounces at lists.ysu.edu [mailto:urbanth-l-bounces at lists.ysu.edu] On Behalf Of Fethi Keles
Sent: Friday, July 24, 2009 11:41 AM
To: URBANTH-L at lists.ysu.edu
Subject: [URBANTH-L]a question concerning methods/ethics


I would like to receive opinions on the following issue, if possible.

What most everyone does when we write things up is to change names and use pseudonyms etc. etc. But, what do you do if an informant a) specifically asks to be identified with his/her actual name in your study (book, article whatever) b) says s/he doesn't care/wouldn't mind if you were to use his/her actual name?

I feel the answer to this must be more than 'well go ahead and do as s/he says', for there could be a whole lot of other implications if one does so. Any readings you would suggest? What courses of action would be on the table in the two cases above?

Any thoughts will be appreciated. Thank you.

Fethi Keles
PhD Candidate in Cultural Anthropology
Maxwell School
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