Definition of Thick Description in Qualitative Research
Thick description is a term coined by the anthropologist Clifford Geertz, who defined it as "the detailed account of field experiences in which the researcher makes explicit the patterns of cultural and social relationships and puts them in context" (Geertz, 1973, p. 6). Thick description goes beyond mere description of facts or events, and provides a deeper interpretation of the meanings, contexts, and implications of the phenomenon.
Thick description is not only a way of writing, but also a way of thinking and analyzing qualitative data. It involves a careful and systematic observation of the phenomenon, a reflexive and critical examination of the researcher's own assumptions and biases, and a creative and empathetic engagement with the participants' perspectives and experiences.