Her attempt is to visually depict how, both at ‘home’ as well as abroad, violence and oppression – in terms of gender, class, caste, ethnicity etc. – as well as strength and resilience, characterise lives. With this project, she will attempt to understand how illustrations might benefit the research process and output. She is trying to find out whether pictures might offer an opportunity for joint knowledge production; can those researched be more involved and intervene upon the researcher’s interpretations? She will also monitor the drawing process: does it enhance her comprehension of the life experiences she depicts? Finally, illustration as an ethnographic visual tool – more than photography and film – could better protect particularly vulnerable participants, yet what other ethical considerations should be accounted for in this process? Many questions remain and more will ensue, offering further opportunities for reflection as the project evolves.
Lisa Caviglia is working on a graphic novel based on life narratives collected during research with South Asian migrant women in Europe.