Changing “I”: Autoethnography and the Reflexive Self

  • Lisa R. Merriweather University of North Carolina at Charlotte


Autoethnography is a qualitative methodology that seeks to understand culture. It is unique from ethnography in that the researcher may be a member of the culture under study. An autoethnographic study of a non-traditional mentorship is highlighted. While the study yielded important findings - a product - relative to developing a mentorship, it also yielded important understandings about what the influence of the methodological approach  - a process - on the researcher as subject is when the researcher is the instrument of data collection. This article explores the influence of autoethnography on the researcher-participant and articulates the impact of acknowledging "I", discovering "I", and changing "I" as a process inherent in the methodology.

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