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Study - Digital version

An Autoethnography on the Reasons for Mixing Identities


The content of this scientific study will help you to perceive and understand how some people with multiple cultures might feel and behave when the intersection and interlocking of cultures influence their attempts to fit in or to adjust to a different culture. 

The study included Photovoice as a unique approach that brings to life particular experiences and could provide a specific way to ask about the person’s concerns.  This method allows people to communicate their own experiences.

The autoethnography also contained the Life Story Interview method based on the Labovian approach. The method requires to answer several questions, and provides a form to summarize the story; answers the questions who, when, and where the story happened; connects story events in chronological order, evaluates or justify sharing the story, provides the results, and goes back to the beginning of the narration to tell that the story ended.

The study also included the key feature Complete Member Researcher (CMR) proposed by Anderson (2006).

The research, discussions, and illustrations will help to understand the need of cultural competence in education, cultural differences  in education, and the impact of culture on education aiming to inform the readers to empower their program participants, service recipients, clients, students, teachers, and so forth. This autoethnography may help answering many questions including: How does culture influence education? 


The purpose of this study was to explore why some people with multiple cultures might turn into cultural chameleons to fit in or to adjust to a different culture.  I explored my cultural experiences compared to the academic literature on disability, gender, and ethnicity.  The study included qualitative analytic autoethnography inquiry, the Labovian life story interview, and photovoice, and the intersectionality, multiple cultural identities, and social categorization theories as combined framework. 

The study was an approach to illustrate my personal perspective and to provide a process to document my findings.  The findings revealed 14 themes from the data and analysis of the Labovian life story, photovoice, complete-member researcher, and the commitment to theoretical analysis using NVivo10 software.  Some of the findings revealed were burnout, doubt, trapped, vulnerable, boxed, betrayed, deceived, invisible, resist, and voiceless. 

The findings made significant contributions to the literature and revealed that mixing behaviors might develop based on the motives of contingency created by cognitive ambiguity across the powers of cultural difference.  It also added to the growing literature of cultural chameleon behavior, intersectionality, multicultural identities, disability, gender, ethnicity, and racial and ethnic minority as whole groups.  I shared my cultural experiences, hoping readers could understand the reasons some people with multiple cultures might turn into cultural chameleons to fit in or to adjust to a different culture (Leal-Covey, 2015, p. iv).


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