Research Question

Week 6 Research Question Version Eight:

How can I use animation to address and create discussion about the effect the stereotyping of Gypsies in media have on Romani New Zealanders. 

Sub Questions:

  • How do the troupes and stereotypes affect the identity of Romani in New Zealand?
  • How can I use animation to express the truth as I see it, in a way that creates an impact?
  • How can I create an open dialogue that educates people about Romani’s place in society?
  • Why does there not seem to be a racism taboo for Romani?
  • Who is my audience? 

Week 5 Research Question Version Seven:

How do negative perceptions of Romani effect the race and how can I use animation to convey the views people have of Romani people and the issues they face?

Week 4 Research Question Version Six:

How can I use animation to challenge the marginalised and romanticised idealisation of the Romani People? (Using a New Zealand based perspective)

Week 4 Research Question Version Five:

How can I use animation to challenge the marginalised and romanticised idealisation of the Romani people, to show a diverse race of people spread across nations while still retaining the uniqueness of our Ethnic identity? 

Week 3 Research Question Version Four:

How can I use animation to convey how the negative perception of the Romani people effect the lives they lead and the choices they make. So that others may question their own commonly held misconceptions and that those that come after can continue to challenge the lasting effects of this racial discrimination. 

Week 3 Research Question Version Three (It’s gotten a bit longer):

How do the negative perceptions of Romany contribute to the under-representation of Romany in higher education, and how can I use the medium of Animation to convey the views people have of the Romany people and the issues that Romany people face across the world. So that young people see more option for their future, and that those who come after can continue to challenge the lasting effects of this racial discrimination. 

Week 2 Research Question Version Two:

How can Animation, (VR, or AR?) be used to address the misrepresentation of the Romanichal Romany people.

Week 1 Research Question Version One:

Bridging the gap – An investigation into the misrepresentation of the Romany people.

Research Methods I am currently using in my practice:

  • Reading autobiographies written from a Romany perspective
  • Reading academic papers written concerning the Romany people
  • Looking at other businesses/people who are using innovative ways to teach people about important topics. 

Below is my initial Research Proposal. 

This will be updated as I progress with my iterations. 

During the final year of my degree in Digital Design, I researched how anthropomorphism could be used to convey the loss of Romany Cultural identity in an animated short film. Through the course of this investigation, I became conscious of the scope of this cultural loss, and the subsequent cultural appropriation has on the Romany people, and how academia will benefit from further exploration of this topic.

I read a paper that discussed the under-representation of Roma in higher education, and myself being Romany in university, this message struck a personal note. (Mulcahy, Baars, Bowen-Viner, & Menzies, 2017) Even in this decade, there are still many misconceptions made about the Roma, as stated by Theresa Schlimmer in her 2013 paper ‘The negative assumptions that majority groups hold against the Roma minority appears to be an example of social control.’ (Schlimmer, n.d.)

In my own research, and from my own personal experience of being part of the community I have concluded that these perceived beliefs, and distrust, exist on both sides of the racial divide. As stated in a paper by Greenfield and Smith,

Many housed Gypsy and Travellers experience the denial of ethnic identity acutely. Several expressed a concern that ‘the worst thing is when you move into the house they count you as settled you’re part of the population, you’re not a Gypsy any more because they put you into a house’ and were concerned that their identity is not always recognised as ‘authentic’ by others, both Gypsies and Travellers and by the wider society. (Greenfields & Smith, 2010)

The key question I propose to answer with my research is: How can an animated narrative be utilised to correct the misrepresentation of the Romany people?

I will be employing the methodology of practice-based research, and a mixed method approach. I intend on furthering my understanding by reading and cross-referencing papers and academic studies. I would also like to utilise surveys to interview Romany people. I will be learning how to better craft a narrative that will communicate effectively with a wider audience, alongside honing my character animation skills.

The world has always had a fascination with the Romany people, a romanticism that that does not reconcile with my own upbringing. Many Roma are ignorant of our history, which is unsurprising with so few accessible ways to connect with the past. Romany people are spread across the globe, we are a race as diverse as the challenges my ethnic monitory face.

My final animation, and the resulting narrative that it will convey will be of benefit to everyone, but in particular a generation of people disconnected from their own Culture.


Greenfields, M., & Smith, D. M. (2010). Housed Gypsy Travellers, Social Segregation and the Reconstruction of Communities. Housing Studies, 25(3), 397–412.

Mulcahy, E., Baars, S., Bowen-Viner, K., & Menzies, L. (2017, July). The underrepresentation of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller pupils in higher education. Commissioned by King’s College London. Retrieved from

Schlimmer, T. (n.d.). Roma Culture Study. Retrieved from