Research Materials and Design
PACS 692, Spring 1997
Dr Terence Wesley-Smith
Center for Pacific Islands Studies
University of Hawai'i at Manoa
1890 East-West Rd, Moore 215
Honolulu, HI 96822
Tel: (808) 956-2668
Dr Karen Peacock
Pacific Curator, Hamilton Library
University of Hawai'i at Manoa
2550 The Mall
Honolulu, HI 96822
Tel: (808) 956-2851
The seminar will introduce students in the MA program in
Pacific Islands Studies and other interested graduate students to
the materials and research skills necessary for successful
completion of the thesis, Plan B final paper, or dissertation. It
will involve the supervised production of a detailed proposal for
research, and include an intensive survey of reference and
The seminar will meet once a week throughout the semester.
There will be formal presentations, sometimes by invited
speakers, and supervised research exercises. The emphasis will be
on student participation and group discussion. Attendance is
Students will be evaluated on the basis of the completion of
an annotated bibliography (see Appendix A), due 3/17, and a
research proposal (see Appendix B), final version due 5/5, as
well as for their participation in classroom discussion. The
final grade will be determined as follows:
Annotated bibliography - 30%
Research proposal - 60%
Participation - 10%
The main texts for the course will be: Catherine Marshall and
Gretchen B. Rossman 1995 Designing Qualitative Research.
Second Edition. Thousand Oaks, London, New Delhi: Sage
Publications, and Renato Rosaldo 1989. Culture and Truth: The
Remaking of Social Analysis. Boston: Beacon. These will be
supplemented by extensive extracts from Norman Denzin and Yvonna
Lincoln (eds.) 1994, Handbook of Qualitative Research . London:
Other related texts include:
David Sternberg. 1981. How to Complete and Survive a Doctoral
Dissertation.. New York: St Martins Press.
Hayden V. White. 1973. Metahistory: The Historical Imagination
in Nineteenth-Century Europe.
Peter Novick. 1988. That Noble Dream: The
"Objectivity Question" and the American Historical
Profession. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Joyce Appleby, Lynn Hunt, and Margaret Jacob. Telling the
Truth about History. New York: Norton.
Robert White. 1990. White Mythologies: Writing History and the
James Clifford and George Marcus. 1986. Writing Culture: The
Poetics and Politics of Ethnography. Berkeley: UC Press.
PART I: INTRODUCTION
Week 1 (1/13). Orientation
Seminar expectations and requirements
Week 2 (1/20). Holiday
Week 3 (1/27). Rethinking social analysis
Building social analysis on the shifting sands of truth and
Rosaldo, Culture and Truth. Entire book.
Week 4 (2/3). Planning and conducting research
Nature of thesis and Plan B research, and associated trials
Marshall and Rossman Preface, Introduction, The Substance
of the Study, pp. ix-37.
Norman Denzin and Yvonna Lincoln "Introduction: Entering
the Field of Qualitative Research," in Denzin and Lincoln Handbook
of Qualitative Research. pp1-17.
Week 5 (2/10). Constructing a research proposal
The purpose and structure of the research proposal, and
Marshall and Rossman How to Conduct the Study, pp 38-77.
Valerie Janesick "The Dance of Qualitative Research
Design: Metaphor, Methodolatry, and Meaning" in Denzin and
Janice Morse "Designing Funded Qualitative Research,"
in Denzin and Lincoln, pp. 220-235.
David Sternberg "The Dissertation Proposal, " Chapter 4
in Sternberg How to Complete and Survive a Doctoral
Week 6 (2/17). Holiday
PART II: RESEARCH MATERIALS
Week 7 (2/24). Accessing Pacific Islands library materials
Introduction to the Pacific Collection of Hamilton Library
and the on-line catalogue.
Week 8 (3/3). Pacific databases and reference sources
The Hawaii-Pacific Journal index; Expanded Academic Index;
Uncover; Trust Territory Archives index; Bishop Museum catalogue.
Week 9 (3/10). Pacific periodicals, newspapers, internet
sources, and audio-visual materials
Exploring Pacific periodicals and newspapers. Resources on
audiotape, videotape, film, and in digitized electronic storage
systems.Bibliographic sources in print; access to Pacific
resources via the internet.
PART III: RESEARCH DESIGN
Week 10 (3/17). Defining the topic
Identifying and defining a suitable topic for research.
Janice Morse Designing Funded Qualitative Research,
David Sternberg How to Complete and Survive a Doctoral
Dissertation. Chapter 2 The Great Decision: Reordering
Priorities and Choosing a (Viable) Topic. pp. 30-56.
Brij Lal Broken Waves: A History of the Fiji Islands in the
Twentieth Century. Preface, pp.xv-xviii.
Vilsoni Hereniko Woven Gods: Female Clowns and Power in Rotuma.
Prologue: Homeward Bound, pp. 1-11.
Lilikala Kame'eleihiwa Native Land and Foreign Desires: Pehea
La E Pono Ai? Acknowledgments and Chapter 1 In the Beginning,
Week 11 (3/24). Holiday
Week 12 (3/31). Justifying the topic
Describing the background and significance of the research
Robert Borofsky Making History: Pukapukan and
Anthropological Constructions of Knowledge. Chapter 1
Differing Accounts of the Past, pp. 1-17.
Lamont Lindstrom Cargo Cult: Strange Stories of Desire from
Melanesia and Beyond. Chapter 1 What Happened to Cargo Cults?
Week 13 (4/7). Planning the methodology I
Identifying needed data and suitable methods for obtaining
Marshall and Rossman Data Collection Methods, pp78-107
Week 14 (4/14). Planning the methodology II
Robert Stake Case Studies, in Denzin and Lincoln pp. 236-247
Andrea Fontana and James Frey Interviewing: The Art of Science,
in Denzin and Lincoln, pp. 361-376.
Patricia Adler and Peter Adler Observational Techniques, in
Denzin and Lincoln, pp. 377-392.
Ian Hodder The Interpretation of Documents and Material Culture,
in Denzin and Lincoln, pp. 393-402.
PART IV: CONDUCTING RESEARCH AND PRESENTING
Week 15 (4/21). Data analysis
Organizing and analyzing the data
Marshall and Rossman Recording, Managing, and Analyzing Data,
Norman Denzin The Art and Politics of Interpretation, in Denzin
and Lincoln, pp. 500-515.
David Sternberg How to Complete and Survive a Doctoral
Dissertation, Chapter 5 The Unfolding Dissertation:
Researching and Writing It, pp. 108-137.
Week 16 (4/28).Writing the thesis or Plan B paper
Organizing and presenting the material
Marshall and Rossman, Managing Time and Resources; Defending the
Value and Logic of Qualitative Research, pp120-152.
Laurel Richardson Writing: A Method of Inquiry, in Denzin and
Lincoln, pp. 516-529.
James Clifford The Predicament of Culture, Chapter 12
Identity in Mashpee, pp. 277-346.
Week 17 (5/5). Reflection and review
The purpose of this assignment is to produce an annotated
bibliography of works relevant to the topic of your thesis or
Plan B paper.
What is an annotated bibliography?
According to Robert Harmon
In a broad sense an annotated bibliography is a list of books,
articles or other materials accompanied by explanatory notes
which give some idea of either the content or value (or both) of
the items listed.
What works should be included?
You should aim to include all books and journal articles that
have direct and indirect relevance for your research topic. For
example, if you are writing a history of the Ka Lahui Hawai'i
sovereignty movement you should include all books and journal
articles that discuss the movement, and would probably want to
cite a selection of other works that deal with sovereignty
movements in general. If you are investigating the portrayal of
women in the works of Albert Wendt, you would need to compile a
list of all of Wendt's works, all published analyses of his work,
plus a selection of important texts from the area of literary
criticism, feminist theory or whatever.
Depending on your topic, you may want to include important
articles from periodicals such as Pacific Islands Monthly or
Islands Business Pacific. Newspapers may also be important
sources of information, especially if you are dealing with
contemporary issues. You should at least list the newspaper
itself, and it may sometimes be appropriate to list particular
newspaper articles or stories .
Unpublished materials, such as government documents or
conference papers, are often important and should be listed.
Don't forget to list any relevant dissertations or theses. In
some cases it may be appropriate to list videotaped or other
How should the bibliography be organized?
There are several different ways of organizing the entries,
and you should select the one that appears to be the most useful.
In some cases it may be appropriate to use one alphabetized list.
In others it may work better to group your references topically
by subject e.g, works on Ka Lahui, works about sovereignty
movements, etc. or works by Albert Wendt, critical analyses of
Albert Wendt, etc. Some people separate published and unpublished
works, and books from articles, but there is usually no clear
advantage to this approach.
How should materials be cited?
Consistency is the key when it comes to citation style.
Consult a reputable style manual (e.g. Turabian's A Manual for
Writers of Term papers, Theses and Dissertations).
What about the annotation?
The purpose of the annotation is to briefly summarize the
contents of the cited work, and to indicate its usefulness for
your topic. A typical entry might be
Buck, Elizabeth 1993. Paradise Remade: The Politics of
Culture and History in Hawai'i. Philadelphia: Temple
Uses a wide range of critical theories to discuss the
transformation of Hawaiian culture under the impact of Western
imperialism. Provides a theoretical and historical context t for
he emergence of sovereignty movements.
Berger, Sidney E. 1991. The Design of Bibliographies:
Observations, References and Examples. Mansell.
Harmon, Robert B. 1989. Elements of Bibliography: A Simplified
Approach. Metuchen, N.J. and London: The Scarecrow Press.
Harner, James L. 1985. On Compiling an Annotated Bibliography.
New York: The Modern Language Association of America.
The purpose of this assignment is to produce a research
proposal. You can select any topic that relates to the Pacific
islands. You are not asked to do the research. Rather, you are
asked to describe what you would like to investigate, why you
wish to investigate it, and how you intend to organize the
research and writing. Your purpose is to convince the reader (and
yourself!) that your topic is worth pursuing, that the project is
feasible, and that all aspects are well thought out.
The proposal should be 15-20 pages in length, and consist of
the following section: 1) purpose, 2) background, 3)
significance, 4) methods, 5) outline, and 6) bibliography.
Before embarking on the proposal proper, there will be some
assignments designed to help you identify a suitable topic.
Concept paper --- rough draft due Week 3
(1/27); final version due Week 7 (2/24)
A short (1-3 pages) preliminary description of your
project. What is the proposed topic? Why is it worth pursuing?
How do you intend to research it? What books and articles are
The research proposal
The proposal should include the following
1. Purpose -- due Week 9 (3/10)
This is the first section of the proposal. It consists of
a brief statement that explains why it is important that the
research be carried out; what the topic is; what the question(s)
to be answered are, or what the puzzle to be solved is; and what
outcome is expected. (2 pages).
This section should be brief, clear, and interesting. It is
the first thing readers will read, and the first impression they
will have of your work. It is difficult to write. You will
probably revise it drastically after you have finished the other
sections, when you are in a better position to sum up the main
aspects of your project.
2. Background -- due Week 9 (3/10)
In this section, you should provide enough information so
that the reader can understand the context, purpose, and need for
the research. (2 pages).
Are you applying a theory in a new area, testing a hypothesis,
or challenging conventional wisdom? What important gap in the
literature will your work fill? What new ground are you breaking?
What larger questions will your work throw light on? How have you
arrived at this topic? have you worked in this area before? What
is it about the topic that makes it important to you personally?
3. Significance -- due Week 12 (3/31)
This section explains the contribution this project will
make to an academic discipline, or to solving a practical
problem. (1 page).
Show how your work will further our theoretical knowledge or
bring new empirical evidence to light. Who might make use of this
knowledge? Where might it be published?
4. Methods -- due Week 14 (4/14)
In this section you should discuss exactly how you are
going to collect the information necessary to address the
research questions you have identified, and how you will go about
analyzing it. (3 pages).
Will you conduct a survey? If so, how will it be structured?
What questions will you ask? How many people will you interview,
and how will you select them? What methods will you use to make
sense of the results? Are there alternative methods of collecting
the information? Why have you selected these methods? What are
the limitations of the approach?
How will you write up the results of your research? Here
you should provide an outline of the proposed paper showing the
various sections and subsections, with a brief description of
what each will contain.
List the important books, articles, and documents that
relate to your project (see Appendix B: annotated bibliography).
[Subject: Research Approaches; Pacific/Comparative]