Representation, Legitimation, and Autoethnography: An Autoethnographic Writing Story

  • Nicholas L. Holt Leeds Metropolitan University


The purpose of this article is to critique representation and legitimation as they relate to the peer review process for an autoethnographic manuscript. Using a conversation derived from seven reviewers’ comments pertaining to one autoethnographic manuscript, issues relating to (a) the use of verification strategies in autoethnographic studies; and, (b) the use of self as the only data source are discussed. As such, this paper can be considered as an autoethnographic writing story. The problematic nature of autoethnography, which is located at the boundaries of scientific research, is examined by linking the author’s experiences of the review process with dominant research perspectives. Suggestions for investigators wishing to produce autoethnographic accounts are outlined along with a call for the development of appropriate evaluative criteria for such work.