Departmental Papers (SPP)

Document Type

Journal Article

Date of this Version

September 2007


This article critically examines a qualitative research interview in which cultural barriers between a white non-Muslim female interviewer and an African American Muslim interviewee, both from the USA, became evident and were overcome within the same interview. This interview and two follow-up interviews are presented as a 'telling case' about crossing cultural barriers. The analysis focuses on seven phases of the interview (cultural barriers, warming up, crossing the racial barrier, connecting as social workers, connecting as women, connecting as students, and crossing the tape recorder barrier). The discussion outlines the pre-interview and during-interview barriers and facilitating conditions and related implications for cross-cultural qualitative research interviewing.


Postprint version. Published in Qualitative Social Work, Volume 6, Issue 3, September 2007, pages 353-372.
Publisher URL:


African American, barriers, cross-cultural interviewing



Date Posted: 10 November 2008