Different kinds of knowing: Generating qualitative data through mobile interviewing

Lyndsay Brown, Kevin Durrheim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

77 Citations (Scopus)


In this article, it is proposed that when an interviewer participates interactively in an interview creating a largely unrehearsed conversation, a different form of (intersubjective) knowledge can be produced. This kind of knowledge can be particularly useful in the research of elusive "social facts," such as subtle and ongoing discrimination, segregation, and prejudice. However, given the familiarity of socialized interviewer/interviewee positionings, achieving this type of inter-activity in interviews is difficult. One way to disrupt this fixity is through situated talking while on the move (walking and/or driving). Drawing on data generated during mobile interviews in Durban, South Africa, the authors examine the various features of this mobile methodology and the impact this methodological choice had on the interview/interviewee relationship and the data (and knowledge) generated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)911-930
Number of pages20
JournalQualitative Inquiry
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Interaction
  • Interviewing
  • Mobile methodology
  • Race

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anthropology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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