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Accepted Paper:

What to give in return? - handling suspicion in a Roma community from Romania  
Zsuzsa Plainer (ISPMN (the Romanian Institute for Research on National Minorities))

Paper long abstract:

"It's OK you're interested in researching us but how would you reward our stories?" - was the question Roma from Galilei Street (an urban district in Romania) frequently addressed me enhancing their suspicion. "Giving something in return" has a longer history in anthropological methodology and research ethic: reflexivity of the 80ies deconstructed the invisible researcher figure, disciplines like applied anthropology or feminism disclaimed his/her superiority towards the informants. Its demand is enforced here by a set of differences: a learned, relatively well-off Hungarian is called upon to reward Roma, regarded as underclass-members. Accounting mistrust and the need for reciprocity as a less personal issue (but embedded in classificatory system local Roma are marginalized through), typical incentives (money, food, gifts) are enlisted. As all are proved to be inadequate to gain the informants' trust, another technique is suggested with its benefits for research-politics revealed: helping the locals in their business with public institutions.

Panel W044
What are you really doing here? Suspicion and the politics of ethnography
  Session 1