From a community-based perspective, all that is known about a community is obtained through intersubjective engagement. But how, exactly, is knowledge socially constructed and revealed in community-based projects? This article addresses this question by focusing on the use of narratives to understand a community. First, the importance of stories for gaining insight into a community’s reality is presented, followed by an examination of how this information should be accessed and engaged. The principles of Community-based Participatory Research (CBPR) that are consistent with this narrative approach are then discussed. Next, reflexivity is described to be the key for reading properly a community’s story. Finally, the conclusion points to the cooperative component of knowledge creation.


Community-Based Participatory Research, Intersubjectivity, Reflexivity, Community

Author Bio(s)

Karie Jo Peralta, Ph.D. is Assistant Professor of Sociology in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at The University of Toledo, Toledo, OH. Her areas of interest are community-based research, race relations, and the sociology of education. Correspondence regarding this article can be addressed directly to: karie.peralta@utoledo.edu.

John W. Murphy, Ph.D. is Professor of Sociology in the Department of Sociology at the University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL. His research interests are in community health and sociological theory.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.





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