In this very special episode of New Books in Interpretive Political and Social Science we feature Lee Ann Fujii’s Interviewing in Social Science Research: A Relational Approach (Routledge, 2018), which is the fifth title in the Routledge Series on Interpretive Methods. Lee Ann Fujii was a professor at the University of Toronto who published widely on political violence, and on interview methods. She died unexpectedly in March 2018. The significance of her scholarship, the acuity of her intellect, and the density of her humanism were already well recognized in her too short lifetime. Yet the full importance of Lee Ann’s work, of how she conducted herself as one who both thought and felt deeply has continued to be acknowledged and celebrated since her passing—not least of all, through the community of new and emerging researchers she nurtured and mentored. On this episode, two of her mentees, Jessica Soedirgo and Aarie Glas, reflect on their experiences working with Lee Ann. They talk about the contents of Interviewing in Social Science Research, on how relational interviewing methods differ from others, and discuss how Lee Ann’s approach inspired them to rethink their own projects, and collaborate with each other.
Listeners interested in learning more about Lee Ann Fujii’s life and work can read tributes here (scroll down to “An Ode to Her Revolt: Remembering Lee Ann Fujii"); and also get details about an award and travel grant in her name. Lahoma Thomas has an article on being mentored by Lee Ann, which Jessica Soedirgo mentions in the interview.
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Nick Cheesman is a fellow in the Department of Political and Social Change, Australian National University, and a committee member of the Interpretive Methodologies and Methods group. He co-hosts the New Books in Southeast Asian Studies channel.