신촌 지역 사회학과 학생 몇이 모여 John Levi Martin의 Thinking Through Methods를 읽는 세미나를 가졌습니다. 모임은 8주간 진행하였는데 간단한 요약 및 정리를 함께 공유합니다. (작성, 익명)
Chapter 4: Talking to People
1 Control and Exert yourself. Don’t nod only when you hear what you want to hear - Clever Hans syndrome – but keep balance of your expressions 2 Don’t use your gut feelings to determine whether people are lying. Rather, ask more – fact checking.
1People may lie or conceal because i) they like you and don’t want to disappoint you ii) your question tries to expose private matters (“did you just fart?”) iii) you haven’t exerted yourself (“it’s none of your business” “sure, if you want the world to be that way”) iv) they try to justify themselves (“my deeds originate from my pure motives and beliefs”) v) for fun vi) they don’t trust you
2 People don’t necessarily have ready-made opinions. Instead, they often have and inchoate mass of ideas. 3 In many cases, the issues people are most interested in are those that they are least likely to have clear opinions about. 4 People like to justify themselves: they tell retrospective stories to defend or idealize themselves. (Religious conversions) So asking them “why” won’t get you to truth. 5 People answer to questions about preferences, opinions, or ideas by communicating their theories of themselves. But in real life, they actually have to make a choice, and we want to know what choices they make to see what they are willing to give up, and what they can plausibly get in exchange. 6 So their answers (ideas) are not an abstraction of motivations (why); rather it is what they’re fighting with.
The interview is a set of tasks, strung together so that it feels like a conversation. Each time you ask a question, you are setting a task for the interviewee. When you correctly understand the nature of the task as the respondent interprets it, you can understand the response. Otherwise, you can’t. Because...
1 Don’t see things you want to see: Altemeyer’s case
2 Attribution theory: we think that what other people do what they do is because of the kind of people they are, but we are generous to ourselves (“him yelling at his kid because he is a pretty bad father and I’m yelling because of the ‘situation’ we’re in”)
3 The context of Desirability bias: In less than ten seconds they have to answer. So...
The Authoritarian Personality, Theodor Adorno et al. (1950): “What are some desires you find hard to control?” Authoritarians tended to say things like “punch someone in the face.” Anti-authoritarians (good guys, a.k.a liberals), in contrast, gave answers like this: “To lash out at those people who voice an attitude of racial discrimination or an attitude of a dishonest intellect” and “Telling people about fallacies in our economic systems.”
Liberals, tried to demonstrate their agreement in political desire, with the researchers. Some forms of Desirability bias, therefore, have ecological validity. Also, that’s how the world is to be. So maybe it wasn’t a problem in the first place.
1 when and how you address your question will alter their response 2 which also means that people are usually in a middle of a cognitive work: you may be getting something that is in flux
The Semistructured Interview
1 Having different nuggets that you can ask in any order... both control and spontaneity 2 Also you should have a good bag of ready prompts. “Think of it like practicing the scales for a jazz musician. On stage, she won’t be playing scales, but if she doesn’t practice, what she does play is going to be a tad rough.” 3 Objectify social data: let it naturally emerge, and ask about anything remaining that you haven’t learned at the end. 4 Maybe there is a reason to him being a bad subject... think in a social context 5 Never put yourself up against the interviewee 6 Sustain the interviewer-interviewee relationship
Art of Asking and Writing Questions
1 Clarity: relatively short questions with distinct ideas respectively. Avoid double-barreled questions and negations. 2 Specificity and Plausible Tasks: Do not generalize beyond their abilities; don’t ask them what they “usually do”. People aren’t that good at memorizing, and they may even overestimate what they actually (“What were you doing last Sunday?” rather than “How often do you attend church?”). 3 Precise words are better. 4 Do not ask the respondent to answer your theoretical question... also leave the lawyering to lawyers.
Why we need Pretesting
Because you shouldn’t Contaminate interviewees by 1 explaining a question or 2 doing the old one- two.
1 Avoid Response Set: They may just say yes not to disappoint you. 2 Don’t Contaminate 3 Avoid Buzzwords: most of the sociological terms are buzzwords – diversity, tolerance, gentrification, and patriotism. 4 Don’t Force Choices. 5 Beware the Overly Open: be precise to avoid the like-likes 6 Don’t Ask Why: you will only get justifications 7 Triangulate: “How” you ask questions may alter responses. Therefore be aware of what is going on.
1 Record stuffs, Get their early, and Dress up sensibly. 2 Keep the conversation going – utilize markers. 3 Sometimes people will say things that you think you do understand, and they still don’t make sense. Keep inquiring what they actually mean; because this is often where the most interesting material will be. 4 From the example of Jocelyn Viterna (2013) (p.106): you should take the time to really understand what your respondent is trying to tell you.
Response Process – What good is a Survey?
1 The strength of survey is that it helps us learn more about the response process. Representativeness is just that hippie stew. 2 A Gestalt shift – from its prosaic feature, sociologists realized that it wasn’t that all these biases and distortions were things that kept us from understanding the logic of opinion – they were the logic of opinion