autoethnography self photo


  • “The pocho is an anglicized Mexican or American of Mexican origin who speaks Spanish with an accent characteristic of North Americans and who distorts and reconstructs the language according to the influence of English” (Anzaldúa)
  • Pochismo is a generational disconnect from the emigrating culture, a self-alienation, and sense of division
  • As a researcher, then, my pochismo became a biographical foundation for doing the study, an experience of “being there,” an attitude “sufficient to experience the mundane and sacred, brash and nuanced aspects of socio-cultural life and, through observations, encounters and conversations, to come to an understanding of it” (Lewis and Russell 400)


“[A]n autobiographical genre of writing and research that displays multiple layers of consciousness, connecting the personal to the cultural’ the author usually writes in the first-person style, making himself or herself the object of research” (Ellis and Bochner). 


  • Focus of any generalisation is usually within a single case over time rather than across multiple cases
  • Writing resembles a novel or biography in the sense that it is presented as a story with a narrator, characters and plot
  • Narrative text is evocative, often disclosing hidden details of private life and highlighting emotional experience
  • Relationships are dramatized as connected episodes unfolding over time rather than as snapshots
  • Researcher’s life is studied along with the lives of other participants in a reflexive connection
  • Accessibility of the writing positions the reader as an involved participant in the dialogue, rather than as a passive receiver


  • Researcher is a complete member of the social world under study
  • Researcher engages in analytic reflexivity, demonstrating an awareness of the reciprocal influence between themselves, their setting and their informants
  • Researcher’s self is visible within the narrative
  • Researcher engages in dialogue with informants beyond the self
  • Researcher demonstrates a commitment to theoretical analysis, not just capturing what is going on in an individual life or socio-cultural environment
  • Reflexively explore their personal experiences and their interactions with others as a way of achieving wider cultural, political or social understanding