Monday, 29 June 2009

The nature of research

It has come to my attention that some participants have taken offense to the questions asked in my survey. This is actually completely understandable, given that I am an unknown entity, and my intentions must also appear somewhat vague. As such this is a concern that I think needs addressing.

A few seem to be under the impression that I'm attempting to assert that interest in Kemetic religion is a result of exposure to popular culture, in a way which they find, understandably, derogatory. I want to assure you that this is not the case at all, and that my hypothesis is rather the opposite of this.

Rather, I am looking at the ways in which ancient Egyptian religion is utilised in the construction of contemporary identity and community, in the hope that it is not dismissed as the result of, for instance, 'too much Stargate'. There is no intention to draw parallels between Kemetic groups and pop culture fads, as this would be dismissive and insulting, which is not my intention at all. However, I hope that you all understand that in the interest of a thorough approach these questions must be asked, especially if such assumptions are to be countered.

It is not my intent to insult my participants (this would be counter productive after all), but equally I cannot control who gets insulted by the study, especially when sensitive matters, such as faith and politics, are being dealt with.

I hope that participants understand that these questions are meant to inspire well thought answers to my research questions and as such it is very difficult to use neutral language when approaching topics which can be very personal for some people. Other questions are intentionally left 'open' to interpretation as this has proved very successful for many ethnographic practitioners. All the themes have been deemed significant to aspects of the research, but if you feel uncomfortable with any of them, simply skip them.

Every effort is being taken to ensure that my study is fair and comprehensive, and please understand that I'm under as much (if not more) scrutiny as anybody. I have to answer the questions of various boards that I answer to, and as such I'll sometimes have to ask questions which seem provocatory. If these insult, I heartily apologise, but in a way, at least you're giving me the reserch I need to help counter Egyptological insularity.

I'm grateful to you all, individual and community, and hope that our relationship is a fruitful pleasant one,

Very best, with no scary secret agendas,


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