Ethical Research Involving Children

Naked by the pool? Blurring the image? Ethical issues in the portrayal of young children in arts-based educational research.

Nutbrown, C. (2011). Naked by the pool? Blurring the image? Ethical issues in the portrayal of young children in arts-based educational research. Qualitative Inquiry, 17(1). pp. 3-14.

Abstract: In this article I discuss my growing worry over the use (and nonuse) of photographs of young children in social research. Taking a view of child protection as paramount, I situate the discussion in the context of ethical governance of research, young children as research participants, changing views of childhoods, and the juxtaposition of the Arts with/in Arts-Based Educational Research. The article sets out a worry over the increasing tendency to pixilate—and hence distort—images of young children for inclusion in research reports or presentations. This (largely unchallenged) practice is slipping into research conventions whilst at the same time research governance and research involving children profilerate. The article argues that the pixilation of photographs of children, may represent a further “crisis of representation” and is an example of the “Othering” of young children in research. (The final, definitive version of this paper has been published in Qualitative Inquiry, 17/1, 01/2011 by SAGE Publications, Inc., All rights reserved. © Sage Publications Inc.)
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