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Accepted Paper:

Embodied narratives of unintended pregnancy. Taking advantage of personal experiences in research  

Author:

Lina Metsämäki (Åbo Akademi University)

Paper short abstract:

In this paper I will present how I take advantage of my experience in writing my doctoral theses about unintended pregnancy. In what way can the embodied narratives that my experience generates be used in research and what ethical and methodological problems do I encounter along the way?

Paper long abstract:

In this paper I will present an autoethnographic approach as part of a larger ethnographic study about unintended pregnancy in Finland in the 2010s. Autoethnography is part of the study that also consists of interview data, a questionnaire about love, sex and relationships and online media articles and comments. The questions I try to answer is what the autoethnographic method can bring to a larger assembly of several methods in order to get a more comprehensive image of a phenomenon. How have I used my own experience and what advantages, or disadvantages, does it have? I see my experience as embodied narratives, narratives in plural because this is a story that I have access to in multiple versions, that is retold in different contexts. It is also embodied knowledge; I have lived through it and it can bring knowledge that is not accessible in any other way than through autoethnography. I will also touch on the ethical and methodological problems that arise and how this approach challenges assumptions about research and what knowledge is.

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