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193 TWENTY-ONE ‘The Rotherham project’: young men represent themselves and their town Nathan Gibson with Zanib Rasool and Kate Pahl In the Rotherham project, photographer Nathan Gibson worked with a group of young men from a wide range of ethnic and cultural backgrounds (Pakistani, Yemeni, Afghan and White British). Participants were aged between 12 and 16, and were involved in youth projects at Rotherham United Community Sports Trust. The project aimed to use photography as a means of exploring identity and to investigate themes related to the ethics of

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Connecting Rotherham through research

This is a book that challenges contemporary images of ‘place’. Too often we are told about ‘deprived neighbourhoods’ but rarely do the people who live in those communities get to shape the agenda and describe, from their perspective, what is important to them. In this unique book the process of re-imagining comes to the fore in a fresh and contemporary look at one UK town, Rotherham.

Using history, artistic practice, writing, poetry, autobiography and collaborative ethnography, this book literally and figuratively re-imagines a place. It is a manifesto for alternative visions of community, located in histories and cultural reference points that often remain unheard within the mainstream media. As such, the book presents a ‘how to’ for researchers interested in community collaborative research and accessing alternative ways of knowing and voices in marginalised communities.

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of ethnography as they continue to unfold (see Lassiter and Campbell, 2010)? A central development has included a focus on the pedagogy of ethnography as a site of knowledge reproduction: in the university at both graduate and undergraduate levels (see Holmes and Marcus, 2008; Campbell and Lassiter, 2010; Hyatt, 2013); and in the communities where collaborative ethnography and other forms of collaborative research surface (Crow and Hart, 2012). Collaborative ethnography and Rotherham In the Rotherham project, collaborative ethnography became a way of

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something that makes a difference to the way the research is done? The research is about change and hope. It has to be sustainable and be about how you do it again in future. Kate: It is about thinking about the realities of co-production in these different places. In the Rotherham project we sat in the spaces – of racism, inequality, and wrote from those spaces. People were situated in the way that – they didn’t shy away from the hard stuff, they described it in different ways. Milton: Do we even know what the ‘Imagine’ impact has had? Paul: For me, ‘Imagine’ was

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across our differences. That commitment, we hope, is present in this text as well, which embraces a very particular difference that has long been at the heart of the Rotherham project: that of voice. The heteroglossia at the core of this collaboration is 5 What kind of book is this allowed to speak for itself in this book; we have explicitly chosen not to smooth all the many voices into one, nor have we sought to normalise the text. As a narrative strategy it may be unfamiliar – even disconcerting – to some readers, but we think it provides an authentic view

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