The true tales in this collection will take readers from the chicken houses of Arkansas to the caves of Venezuela and Mexico to the coast of Alaska. These fifteen adventures range from amusing to life threatening. Some are filled with suspense and danger in exotic places, while others document more routine but important biological field and lab work. Meet the roommate with the rash that wouldn't go away, a friendly bull, some blind cave fish, killer whales, drug smugglers, and hairy roots that are used to produce new medicines. Read about researchers crawling through rotten-egg-smelling muck in search of an elusive mosquitofish, diving into the cold black water of the White River in search of mussels, flying with bush pilots in Alaska, and working with David Attenborough in Arkansas. Here are teachers and researchers, biologists all, all from one university, real people who get their feet wet and their hands dirty in the pursuit of knowledge.
Africanizing Anthropology tells the story of the anthropological fieldwork centered at the Rhodes-Livingstone Institute in Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia) during the mid-twentieth century. Focusing on collaborative processes rather than on the activity of individual researchers, Lyn Schumaker gives the assistants and informants of anthropologists a central role in the making of anthropological knowledge. Schumaker shows how local conditions and local ideas about culture and history, as well as previous experience of outsiders’ interest, shape local people’s responses to anthropological fieldwork and help them, in turn, to influence the construction of knowledge about their societies and lives. Bringing to the fore a wide range of actors—missionaries, administrators, settlers, the families of anthropologists—Schumaker emphasizes the daily practices of researchers, demonstrating how these are as centrally implicated in the making of anthropological knowlege as the discipline’s methods. Selecting a prominent group of anthropologists—The Manchester School—she reveals how they achieved the advances in theory and method that made them famous in the 1950s and 1960s. This book makes important contributions to anthropology, African history, and the history of science.
Ants For Breakfast
James Skibo University of Utah Press, 1999 Library of Congress DS666.K3S53 1999 | Dewey Decimal 392.309599
A view from the remote Philippine highlands where the author’s time in the kalinga homeland was packed with the elements of a thriller novel: mystery, danger, sex, violence, death—and research too!
Ants for Breakfast is about the adventure of modern archaeology. Seeking insight into prehistoric pottery manufacture and use, archaeologist James Skibo traveled to the remote Phillippine highlands to live with the Kalinga people, once headhunters, and one of the few groups in the world who still use ceramics for cooking.
Even as he looked for clues to the past in the practices of the present, the author’s time in the Kalinga homeland was packed with excitment: mystery, danger, sex, violence, and death. It was also an opportunity to taste a world both subtly and vastly different, while adding a new perspective to his own. In the course of his narrative, Skibo seizes every opportunity to link his experiences to the development of modern archaeology, and to such topics as human evolution, the peopling of the world, animal domestication, cultural logic, food taboos, basketball, Indiana Jones, and even Imelda Marcos.
Strap on your snake chaps and slap on some sunscreen as biologist Jennifer Bové takes you out to the field in the company of biologists working on the frontlines of wildlife studies, botany, and resource management. This exuberant and entertaining collection of stories ranges from Myanmar to the Midwest, from Argentina to Alaska and many points in between, offering tales that are by turns thoughtful, funny, tragic, and just-plain-crazy.
During five years of working in snake-ridden sloughs and rough northern seas, Jennifer Bové often asked herself 'Why am I doing this?' Realizing her own experiences were only the tip of the iceberg, she invited friends and colleagues to answer the same question. The result is stories that include deadly snakebites, a plague of marmots, special delivery skunk oil, bald eagle wrangling, and a mountain goat loose in the galley of a research vessel. These adventures are the details behind the data collected by these men and women driven to unlock nature’s truths. In The Back Road to Crazy, seasoned researchers and novices alike reveal the impulse to trade the comfort of a more sheltered career for demanding physical labor, whims of weather, and the company of unruly creatures.
Alma Gottlieb and Philip Graham University of Chicago Press, 2012 Library of Congress DT545.45.B45G72 2012 | Dewey Decimal 305.89634
In a compelling mix of literary narrative and ethnography, anthropologist Alma Gottlieb and writer Philip Graham continue the long journey of cultural engagement with the Beng people of Côte d’Ivoire that they first recounted in their award-winning memoir Parallel Worlds. Their commitment over the span of several decades has lent them a rare insight. Braiding their own stories with those of the villagers of Asagbé and Kosangbé, Gottlieb and Graham take turns recounting a host of unexpected dramas with these West African villages, prompting serious questions about the fraught nature of cultural contact.
Through events such as a religious leader’s declaration that the authors’ six-year-old son, Nathaniel, is the reincarnation of a revered ancestor, or Graham’s late father being accepted into the Beng afterlife, or the increasing, sometimes dangerous madness of a villager, the authors are forced to reconcile their anthropological and literary gaze with the deepest parts of their personal lives. Along with these intimate dramas, they follow the Beng from times of peace through the times of tragedy that led to Côte d’Ivoire’s recent civil conflicts. From these and many other interweaving narratives—and with the combined strengths of an anthropologist and a literary writer—Braided Worlds examines the impact of postcolonialism, race, and global inequity at the same time that it chronicles a living, breathing village community where two very different worlds meet.
H. L. Goodall’s ground-breaking study of what people do with symbols and what symbols do to people explores the lives led by people in organizations. His narratives take on the form of six detective mysteries in which the narrator figures into the plot of the intrigue and then works out its essential patterns.
In the first mystery, "Notes on a Cultural Evolution: The Remaking of a Software Company," Goodall looks at the transition of a Huntsville regional office of a Boston-based computer software company where the lives and social dramas of the participants reflect the current state of high technology. The second essay and perhaps the most insightful, "The Way the World Ends: Inside Star Wars," penetrates the various defenses of the Star Wars command office in Huntsville to discover its secrets and surprises. Goodall shows how media, technology, fear of relationships, and symbolic images of the future unite into the day-to-day operations of people who believe they are responsible for the outer limits of our nation’s defense.
"Lost in Space: The Layers of Illusion Called Adult Space Camp" illustrates how a supposedly innocent theme park invites participation in rituals and ceremonies designed to influence a future generation of taxpayers. In "Articles of Faith," Goodall enters a super mall in Huntsville, noting how shopping centers provide consumers with far more than places to purchase goods and services. "How I Spent My Summer Vacation" finds Goodall back in an academic environment, at a conference of communication scholars, where he demonstrates the difficult task of translating cultural understandings from one context to another. "The Consultant as Organizational Detective" offers the sobering message that real-life mysteries may surprise even the most accomplished sleuth. A concluding chapter, "Notes on Method," and a new autobiographical afterword round out Goodall’s penetrating look at our symbol-making culture.
Collaboration between ethnographers and subjects has long been a product of the close, intimate relationships that define ethnographic research. But increasingly, collaboration is no longer viewed as merely a consequence of fieldwork; instead collaboration now preconditions and shapes research design as well as its dissemination. As a result, ethnographic subjects are shifting from being informants to being consultants. The emergence of collaborative ethnography highlights this relationship between consultant and ethnographer, moving it to center stage as a calculated part not only of fieldwork but also of the writing process itself.
The Chicago Guide to Collaborative Ethnography presents a historical, theoretical, and practice-oriented road map for this shift from incidental collaboration to a more conscious and explicit collaborative strategy. Luke Eric Lassiter charts the history of collaborative ethnography from its earliest implementation to its contemporary emergence in fields such as feminism, humanistic anthropology, and critical ethnography. On this historical and theoretical base, Lassiter outlines concrete steps for achieving a more deliberate and overt collaborative practice throughout the processes of fieldwork and writing. As a participatory action situated in the ethical commitments between ethnographers and consultants and focused on the co-construction of texts, collaborative ethnography, argues Lassiter, is among the most powerful ways to press ethnographic fieldwork and writing into the service of an applied and public scholarship.
A comprehensive and highly accessible handbook for ethnographers of all stripes, The Chicago Guide to Collaborative Ethnography will become a fixture in the development of a critical practice of anthropology, invaluable to both undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty alike.
Children In The Field
edited by Joan Cassell Temple University Press, 1994 Library of Congress GN41.6.C48 1987 | Dewey Decimal 306.0924
"The wisdom of taking children on this journey into the abyss of otherness is debatable. That's the point: the unsettled (and unsettling) quality of this book is what makes it worth reading and pondering."
--The Women's Review of Books
The conditions under which knowledge is acquired help shape that knowledge. Yet, until quite recently, the conditions under which anthropologists observe and interact with members of other cultures were considered the stuff of memoirs, not science. Although many families have accompanied anthropologists to the field, few researchers have discussed this aspect of scientific life. This collection of narratives by anthropologists who brought children with them into the field combines personal drama, practical information, and advice with an examination of the way in which the presence of children can alter the relationship between those who study and those who are studied.
The stories are funny, sad, horrifying, fascinating. Each essay presents different field conditions, locations, family constellations, experiences, and reactions. Photographs of the anthropologists and their children enhance the engaging and illuminating accounts. This book, the first study of its kind, will be essential reading for anyone involved in field research.
"A superb collection of papers documenting the value, trauma, joy, and frustration of taking children along on a field work adventure. This book covers, among other topics: burying a child in the field, bearing a child in the field, analysis of the hardships children face in a difficult field experience, and children serving as role models in language learning and the establishment of rapport with community members. This should be required reading for anyone anticipating a field work experience."
--Sue-Ellen Jacobs, University of Washington
"[These] stories...present the missing factor in anthropological research, which is after all supposed to be producing the most human of disciplines, involved with the intercultural world of woman alive and man alive; at last in this book we have children alive. The volume covers difficulties both of family and field situation and truthfully faces the differences in cultures.... The vignettes of children's lives are unforgettable."
--Edith L.B. Turner, University of Virginia
A fundamental issue for twenty-first century archaeologists is the need to better direct their efforts toward supporting rather than harming indigenous peoples. Collaborative indigenous archaeology has already begun to stress the importance of cooperative, community-based research; this book now offers an up-to-date assessment of how Native American and non-native archaeologists have jointly undertaken research that is not only politically aware and historically minded but fundamentally better as well.
Eighteen contributors—many with tribal ties—cover the current state of collaborative indigenous archaeology in North America to show where the discipline is headed. Continent-wide cases, from the Northeast to the Southwest, demonstrate the situated nature of local practice alongside the global significance of further decolonizing archaeology. And by probing issues of indigenous participation with an eye toward method, theory, and pedagogy, many show how the archaeological field school can be retailored to address politics, ethics, and critical practice alongside traditional teaching and research methods.
These chapters reflect the strong link between politics and research, showing what can be achieved when indigenous values, perspectives, and knowledge are placed at the center of the research process. They not only draw on experiences at specific field schools but also examine advances in indigenous cultural resource management and in training Native American and non-native students.
Theoretically informed and practically grounded, Collaborating at the Trowel’s Edge is a virtual guide for rethinking field schools and is an essential volume for anyone involved in North American archaeology—professionals, students, tribal scholars, or avocationalists—as well as those working with indigenous peoples in other parts of the world. It both reflects the rapidly changing landscape of archaeology and charts new directions to ensure the ongoing vitality of the discipline.
It is often forgotten that anthropology--the scientific study of cultural difference--arose from situations that required a practical management of cultural differences. Out of the practical contexts of colonial contact--administration, mission, nationalism, policing, settler cultivation, tourism, warfare--emerged methods, and images of otherness, that inform anthropological notions of cultural difference to this day.
The essays in this volume share the assumption that "ethnography," far from being the unique purview of anthropology, is a broader field of practice out of which and alongside which anthropology attempted to distinguish itself as a scientific discipline. They explore a variety of situations in colonial South and Southeast Asia and Africa and in the treatment of the indigenous inhabitants of North America and Australia to provide genealogies of present-day anthropological practices, tracing them back to the subjects of colonial ethnography.
This book introduces into the history of anthropology many of the insights developed in recent studies in history, cultural studies, and the anthropology of colonialism. It can serve as a course book in the history of anthropology and the anthropology of colonialism, while at the same time addressing a much larger audience of students of colonial history, of the history of science and modernity, and of globalization.
Peter Pels is Lecturer in Anthropology, University of Amsterdam. Oscar Salemink is Program Officer for Social Sciences and Humanities, The Ford Foundation-Vietnam.
Demands of the Day asks about the logical standards and forms that should guide ethical and experimental anthropology in the twenty-first century. Anthropologists Paul Rabinow and Anthony Stavrianakis do so by taking up Max Weber’s notion of the “demands of the day.” Just as the demand of the day for anthropology decades ago consisted of thinking about fieldwork, today, they argue, the demand is to examine what happens after, how the experiences of fieldwork are gathered, curated, narrated, and ultimately made available for an anthropological practice that moves beyond mere ethnographic description.
Rabinow and Stavrianakis draw on experiences from an innovative set of anthropological experiments that investigated how and whether the human and biological sciences could be brought into a mutually enriching relationship. Conceptualizing the anthropological and philosophic ramifications of these inquiries, they offer a bold challenge to contemporary anthropology to undertake a more rigorous examination of its own practices, blind spots, and capacities, in order to meet the demands of our day.
For most of us the word "desert" conjures up images of barren wasteland, vast, dry stretches inimical to life. But for a great array of creatures, perhaps even more plentiful than those who inhabit tropical rainforests, the desert is a haven and a home. Travel with Michael Mares into the deserts of Argentina, Iran, Egypt, and the American Southwest and you will encounter a rich and memorable variety of these small, tenacious animals, many of them first discovered by Mares in areas never before studied. Accompanying Mares on his forays into these hostile habitats, we observe the remarkable behavioral, physiological, and ecological adaptations that have allowed such little-known species of rodents, bats, and other small mammals to persist in an arid world. At the same time, we see firsthand the perils and pitfalls that await biologists who venture into the field to investigate new habitats, discover new species, and add to our knowledge of the diversity of life.
Filled with the seductions and trials that such adventures entail, A Desert Calling affords an intimate understanding of the biologist's vocation. As he astonishes us with the range and variety of knowledge to be acquired through the determined investigation of little-known habitats, Mares opens a window on his own uncommon life, as well as on the uncommon life of the remote and mysterious corners of our planet.
Recounting her own field experiences in Japanese-American relocation centers during World War II and later in American Indian communities, Rosalie H. Wax offers advice to help the beginning field worker anticipate and confront the exigencies and accidents of fieldwork with good nature, fortitude, and common sense. Doing Fieldwork is a useful book in many respects: as a guide to participant observation and ethnographic fieldwork; as an analysis of the theoretical presuppositions and history of fieldwork; as a discussion of contemporary issues in social science research; and simply as an entertaining and dramatic story.
Who hasn’t fantasized about the unique thrill of working among charismatic and clever dolphins in the wild? Now we no longer have to rely solely on our imaginations . With Dolphin Confidential, Maddalena Bearzi invites all of us shore-bound dreamers to join her and travel alongside the dolphins. In this fascinating account, she takes us inside the world of a marine scientist and offers a firsthand understanding of marine mammal behavior, as well as the frustrations, delights, and creativity that make up dolphin research.
In this intimate narrative, Bearzi recounts her experiences at sea, tracing her own evolution as a woman and a scientist from her earliest travails to her transformation into an advocate for conservation and dolphin protection. These compelling, in-depth descriptions of her fieldwork also present a captivating look into dolphin social behavior and intelligence. The central part of the book is devoted to the metropolitan bottlenose dolphins of California, as Bearzi draws on her extensive experience to offer insights into the daily lives of these creatures—as well as the difficulties involved in collecting the data that transforms hunches into hypotheses and eventually scientific facts. The book closes by addressing the critical environmental and conservation problems facing these magnificent, socially complex, highly intelligent, and emotional beings.
An honest, down-to-earth analysis of what it means to be a marine biologist in the field today, Dolphin Confidential offers an entertaining, refreshingly candid, and always informative description of life among the dolphins.
Significant scholarship exists on anthropological fieldwork and methodologies. Some anthropologists have also published memoirs of their research experiences. Renowned anthropologist Jeffrey Cohen’s Eating Soup without a Spoon is a first-of-its-kind hybrid of the two, expertly melding story with methodology to create a compelling narrative of fieldwork that is deeply grounded in anthropological theory.
Cohen’s first foray into fieldwork was in 1992, when he lived in Santa Anna del Valle in rural Oaxaca, Mexico. While recounting his experiences studying how rural folks adapted to far-reaching economic changes, Cohen is candid about the mistakes he made and the struggles in the village. From the pressures of gaining the trust of a population to the fear of making errors in data collection, Cohen explores the intellectual processes behind ethnographic research. He offers tips for collecting data, avoiding pitfalls, and embracing the chaos and shocks that come with working in an unfamiliar environment. Cohen’s own photographs enrich his vivid portrayals of daily life.
In this groundbreaking work, Cohen discusses the adventure, wonder, community, and friendships he encountered during his first year of work, but, first and foremost, he writes in service to the field as a place to do research: to test ideas, develop theories, and model how humans cope and react to the world.
The essays assembled in this volume are shaped by conditions—both enabling and constraining—that can perhaps best be described as an “ethnographic chiasmus.” This expression refers to the surprise and reversal of position that are characteristic of fieldwork, and it attends to the fact that transcultural understanding comes about as a meeting, touching, or “crossing.” Chiasmus also pertains to the relationship between culture and rhetoric in general. Culture structures rhetoric; rhetoric structures culture. Both are coemergent. In order to elucidate this process, ethnography has to focus on the manifold modes of rhetoric through which culture-specific patterns of thought and action are created.
Since its founding in the nineteenth century, social anthropology has been seen as the study of exotic peoples in faraway places. But today more and more anthropologists are dedicating themselves not just to observing but to understanding and helping solve social problems wherever they occur—in international aid organizations, British TV studios, American hospitals, or racist enclaves in Eastern Europe, for example.
In Exotic No More, an initiative of the Royal Anthropological Institute, some of today's most respected anthropologists demonstrate, in clear, unpretentious prose, the tremendous contributions that anthropology can make to contemporary society. They cover issues ranging from fundamentalism to forced migration, child labor to crack dealing, human rights to hunger, ethnicity to environmentalism, intellectual property rights to international capitalisms. But Exotic No More is more than a litany of gloom and doom; the essays also explore topics usually associated with leisure or "high" culture, including the media, visual arts, tourism, and music. Each author uses specific examples from their fieldwork to illustrate their discussions, and 62 photographs enliven the text.
Throughout the book, the contributors highlight anthropology's commitment to taking people seriously on their own terms, paying close attention to what they are saying and doing, and trying to understand how they see the world and why. Sometimes this bottom-up perspective makes the strange familiar, but it can also make the familiar strange, exposing the cultural basis of seemingly "natural" behaviors and challenging us to rethink some of our most cherished ideas—about gender, "free" markets, "race," and "refugees," among many others.
William O. Beeman
E. Valentine Daniel
Alex de Waal
Faye V. Harrison
A. David Napier
Christopher B. Steiner
Family and Work in Everyday Ethnography exposes the intimate relationship between ethnographers as both family members and researchers. The contributors to this exciting volume question and problematize the “artificial divide” between work and family that continues to permeate writing on ethnographic field work as social scientists try to juggle research and family tensions while “on the job.”
Essays relate experiences that mirror work-family dilemmas that all employed parents face, and show how deeply personal experiences affect social scientists’ home life and their studies. Bringing together voices of various family members—pregnant women, mothers, fathers, and children—Family and Work in Everyday Ethnography demonstrates how the mixture of work and family in this particular occupation has raised questions—both practical and theoretical—that relate to race, class, and gender.
Contributors include: Chris Bobel, Erynn Masi de Casanova, Randol Contreras, C. Aiden Downey, Tanya Golash-Boza, Steven Gold, Sherri Grasmuck, Barbara Katz Rothman,
Jennifer Reich, Leah Schmalzbauer, Gregory Smithsimon, and the editors.
Designed both to encourage beginning naturalists and to challenge more experienced observers to look at the familiar in new ways, A Field Guide to the Familiar offers an introduction to common plants, animals, and natural phenomena. Beautiful drawings add to the book's refreshing approach to nature study. Organized by the seasons of the year, each chapter focuses on one subject and one learning objective. From fall’s first frost to the field crickets of high summer, this innovative guide explores in depth such familiar sights as bumblebees, rainbows, acorns, blueberries, and shooting stars. Each chapter includes descriptive information to help readers identify each subject, as well as life cycle information that shows how a subject functions within a grander scheme. Readers learn that every plant and animal – even the atmosphere – has its own story, and they begin to perceive the natural world as whole, interconnected, and continuous. Whether read sequentially or used as a field companion or handy desk reference, A Field Guide to the Familiar gives every reader a sense of the natural world as an accessible – and endlessly fascinating – place.
Field Life examines the practice of science in the field in the Great Plains and Rocky Mountains of the American West between the 1860s and the 1910s, when the railroad was the dominant form of long-distance transportation. Grounded in approaches from environmental history and the history of technology, it emphasizes the material basis of scientific fieldwork, joining together the human labor that produced knowledge with the natural world in which those practices were embedded.
Four distinct modes of field practice, which were shared by different field science disciplines, proliferated during this period—surveys, lay networks, quarries, and stations—and this book explores the dynamics that underpinned each of them. Using two diverse case studies to animate each mode of practice, as well as the making of the field as a place for science, Field Life combines textured analysis of specific examples of field science on the ground with wider discussion of the commonalities in the practices of a diverse array of field sciences, including the earth and physical sciences, the life and agricultural sciences, and the human sciences.
By situating science in its regional environmental context, Field Life analyzes the intersection between the cosmopolitan knowledge of science and the experiential knowledge of people living in the field. Examples of field science in the Plains and Rockies range widely: geological surveys and weather observing networks, quarries to uncover dinosaur fossils and archaeological remains, and branch agricultural experiment stations and mountain biological field stations.
Field Man is the captivating memoir of renowned southwestern archaeologist Julian Dodge Hayden, a man who held no professional degree or faculty position but who camped and argued with a who's who of the discipline, including Emil Haury, Malcolm Rogers, Paul Ezell, and Norman Tindale. This is the personal story of a blue-collar scholar who bucked the conventional thinking on the antiquity of man in the New World, who brought a formidable pragmatism and "hand sense" to the identification of stone tools, and who is remembered as the leading authority on the prehistory of the Sierra Pinacate in northwestern Mexico.
But Field Man is also an evocative recollection of a bygone time and place, a time when archaeological trips to the Southwest were "expeditions," when a man might run a Civilian Conservation Corps crew by day and study the artifacts of ancient peoples by night, when one could honeymoon by a still-full Gila River, and when a Model T pickup needed extra transmissions to tackle the back roads of Arizona.
To say that Julian Hayden led an eventful life would be an understatement. He accompanied his father, a Harvard-trained archaeologist, on influential excavations, became a crew chief in his own right, taught himself silversmithing, married a "city girl," helped build the Yuma Air Field, worked as a civilian safety officer, and was a friend and mentor to countless students. He also crossed paths with leading figures in other fields. Barry Goldwater and even Frank Lloyd Wright turn up in this wide-ranging narrative of a "desert rat" who was at once a throwback and--as he only half-jokingly suggests--ahead of his time.
Field Man is the product of years of interviews with Hayden conducted by his colleagues and friends Bill Broyles and Diane Boyer. It is introduced by noted southwestern anthropologist J. Jefferson Reid, and contains an epilogue by Steve Hayden, one of Julian's sons.
What did George Schaller note when studying the lions of the Serengeti? How does Piotr Naskrecki use relational databases and electronic field notes? In what way is Bernd Heinrich’s approach “truly Thoreauvian,” in E. O. Wilson’s view? Pioneering a new niche in the study of plants and animals in their native habitat, Field Notes on Science and Nature allows readers to peer over the shoulders and into the notebooks of a dozen eminent field workers, to study firsthand their methods, materials, and fleeting impressions.
Recording field observations is an indispensable scientific skill, but researchers are not generally willing to share their personal records. Here, for the first time, are reproductions of actual pages from notebooks. And in essays abounding with fascinating anecdotes, the authors reflect on the contexts in which the notes were taken.
Covering disciplines as diverse as ecology, paleontology, anthropology, botany, and animal behavior, Field Notes offers specific examples that professional naturalists can emulate to fine-tune their own field methods, along with practical advice that amateur naturalists and students can use to document their adventures.
Field research—the collection of information outside a lab or workplace setting—requires skills and knowledge not typically taught in the classroom. Fieldwork demands exploratory inquisitiveness, empathy to encourage interviewees to trust the researcher, and sufficient aptitude to work professionally and return home safely. The Field Researcher’s Handbook provides a practical guide to planning and executing fieldwork and presenting the results.
Based on his experience conducting field research in more than fifty countries and teaching others a holistic approach to field research, David J. Danelo introduces the skills new researchers will need in the field, including anthropology, travel logistics planning, body language recognition, interview preparation, storytelling, network development, and situational awareness. His time as a combat veteran in the US Marine Corps further enhances his knowledge of how to be observant and operate safely in any environment. Danelo also discusses ethical considerations and how to recognize personal biases. This handbook is intended for researchers in a variety of academic disciplines but also for government, think-tank, and private-sector researchers.
A survey of the innovative scholarship emerging at the intersections of rhetoric, and fieldwork
A variety of research areas within rhetorical studies—including everyday and public rhetorics, space and place-based work, material and ecological approaches, environmental communication, technical communication, and critical and participatory action research, among others—have increasingly called for ethnographic fieldwork that grounds the study of rhetoric within the contexts of its use and circulation. Employing field methods more commonly used by ethnographers allows researchers to capture rhetoric in action and to observe the dynamic circumstances that shape persuasion in ordinary life.
Field Rhetoric: Ethnography, Ecology, and Engagement in the Places of Persuasion gathers new essays that describe and theorize this burgeoning transdisciplinary mode of field-based scholarship. Contributors document and support this ethnographic turn in rhetorical studies through sustained examination of the diverse trends, methods, tools, theories, practices, and possibilities for engaging in rhetorical field research.
This fascinating volume offers an introduction to these inquiries and serves as both a practical resource and theoretical foundation for scholars, teachers, and students interested in the intersection of rhetoric and field studies. Editors Candice Rai and Caroline Gottschalk Druschke have assembled scholars working in diverse field sites to map and initiate key debates on the practices, limitations, and value of rhetorical field methods and research. Working synthetically at the junction of rhetorical theory and field practices, the contributors to this collection build from myriad field-based cases to examine diverse theoretical and methodological considerations. The volume also serves as a useful reference for interdisciplinary qualitative researchers interested in doing research from a rhetorical or discursive perspective in various disciplines and fields, such as English, composition, communication, natural resources, geography, sociology, urban planning, anthropology, and more.
As much as one-tenth of the world’s oceans are covered with sea ice, or frozen ocean water, at some point during the annual cycle. Sea ice thus plays an important, often defining, role in the natural environment and the global climate system. This book is a global look at the changes in sea ice and the tools and techniques used to measure and record those changes. The first comprehensive research done on sea-ice field techniques, this volume will be indispensable for the study of northern sea ice and a must-have for scientists in the field of climate change research.
In Fieldwork Dilemmas ten anthropologists disclose the political and physical dangers inherent in field research. Focusing on former socialist states, they vividly depict the upheavals of everyday life in eastern Euorpe, revealing how their informants and the communities in which they live undergo political and economic dislocations, plummeting living standards, emerging gender inequalities, and ethnic and nationalist violence.
Reports from Armenia, Bulgaria, eastern Germany, Kyrgyzstan, Macedonia, Russia, Serbia, and Uzbekistan show how fieldworkers struggle to reconcile previous experiences with postsocialist stereotypes about Soviet culture, the West, and the effects of the penetration of capitalism into noncapitalist societies. These fieldwork dilemmas are analyzed by anthropologists who are learning to position themselves professionally and personally in the field under often unstable, unpredictable situations. This volume will interest not only anthropologists but fieldworkers of all kinds, and not only scholars of eastern Europe but all those who study rapid societal changes.
This exciting new anthology gathers together Puerto Rican folktales that were passed down orally for generations before finally being transcribed beginning in 1914 by the team of famous anthropologist Franz Boas. These charming tales give readers a window into the imaginations and aspirations of Puerto Rico’s peasants, the Jíbaro.
Some stories provide a distinctive Caribbean twist on classic tales including “Snow White” and “Cinderella.” Others fictionalize the lives of local historical figures, such as infamous pirate Roberto Cofresí, rendered here as a Robin Hood figure who subverts the colonial social order. The collection also introduces such beloved local characters as Cucarachita Martina, the kind cockroach who falls in love with Ratoncito Pérez, her devoted mouse husband who brings her delicious food.
Including a fresh English translation of each folktale as well as the original Spanish version, the collection also contains an introduction from literary historian Rafael Ocasio that highlights the historical importance of these tales and the Jíbaro cultural values they impart. These vibrant, funny, and poignant stories will give readers unique insights into Puerto Rico’s rich cultural heritage.
Esta nueva y emocionante antología reúne cuentos populares puertorriqueños que fueron transmitidos oralmente durante generaciones antes de ser finalmente transcritos comenzando en 1914 por el equipo del famoso antropólogo Franz Boas. Estos encantadores cuentos ofrecen a los lectores un vistazo a la imaginación y las aspiraciones de los jíbaros, los campesinos de Puerto Rico.
Algunas historias brindan un distintivo toque caribeño a cuentos clásicos como "Blanca Nieves" y "Cenicienta". Otros ficcionalizan la vida de personajes históricos locales, como el famoso pirata Roberto Cofresí, representado como una figura al estilo de Robin Hood, quien subvierte el orden social colonial. La colección también presenta personajes locales tan queridos como Cucarachita Martina, la amable cucaracha que se enamora de Ratoncito Pérez, su devoto esposo ratón que le trae deliciosa comida.
Incluyendo una nueva traducción al inglés de estos cuentos populares, así como las versiones originales en español, la colección también contiene una introducción del historiador literario Rafael Ocasio, quien destaca la importancia histórica de estos cuentos y los valores culturales del jíbaro que éstos imparten en los relatos. Estas historias vibrantes, divertidas y conmovedoras brindarán a los lectores una visión única de la rica herencia cultural de Puerto Rico.
Introducción en español (https://d3tto5i5w9ogdd.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/03154419/Ocasio_Cuentos_Intro_Espan%CC%83ol.pdf)
Paul Riesman's Freedom in Fulani Social Life is based upon his two years of residence among the Jelgobe, a group of semi-nomadic Fulani of the Sahel in Upper Volta, western Africa. Since its original publication, this classic study has profoundly influenced the field of anthropology through its re-examination of the enthnographer's personal input on his research.
"Freedom in Fulani Social Life richly documents how the ethnographer's own personal and cultural background is implicated in the research process. . . . For this reason, [Riesman's] book will be of paramount interest to all ethnographers."—Philip L. Kilbride, Reviews in Anthropology
"A remarkably well-written and insightful account of Fulani life. . . . In addition to using the conventional approaches of participating in and observing the daily activities of the Jelgobe . . . Riesman enriches his account by examining his personal feelings about particular incidents."—Library Journal
"An interesting and provocative study."—Choice
At the time of his death in 1988, Paul Riesman was an anthropologist who taught at Carleton College.
National Geographic has been called a window on the world and a passport to adventure. Each month an estimated forty million people in 190 countries open its pages and are transported to exotic realms that delight the eye and mind. Such widespread renown gives the magazine's writers an almost magical access to people and happenings, as doors that are closed to the rest of the journalistic world open wide.
Thomas Y. Canby was fortunate to be a NationalGeographic writer and science editor from 1961 to 1991, a time during which the Society's ventures and size grew by leaps and bounds and the resources available to staff were seemingly limitless. In From Botswana to the Bering Sea, he gives readers an on-the-ground look at the life of a National Geographic field staffer and an insider's view of the fascinating dynamics within the magazine's editorial chambers.
Canby's assignments dealt largely with issues of global concern, and his travels took him to the farthest reaches of the planet. This book gives the reader the visas and tickets to share in Canby's experiences -- from a Filipino rice harvest capped by a feast of deep-fried rats, to impoverished villages of Asia and Africa gripped by the world's most widespread famine, to seal hunting and dog sledding with Eskimos in the Canadian high Arctic. Readers match wits with paranoid guardians of the secret Soviet space program; skirt land mines in the flaming oil fields of Kuwait; and dodge death while scuba diving to an archaeological site in a Florida sinkhole. The book also gives insight into the magazine's inner workings: how article subjects are chosen; how writers are assigned and interact; how prolonged trips to impossibly remote destinations are planned; how staffers operate in the field.
Working for National Geographic has been called "the best job in the world." From Botswana to the Bering Sea describes that unique job, and answers from first-hand knowledge the question Canby and his colleagues are so often asked: "So, what is it like to work for National Geographic?"
When Nathan Wachtel, the distinguished historical anthropologist, returned to the village of Chipaya, the site of his extensive fieldwork in the Bolivian Andes, he learned a group of Uru Indians was being incarcerated and tortured for no apparent reason. Even more strangely, no one—not even his closest informant and friend—would speak about it.
Wachtel discovered that a series of recent deaths and misfortunes in Chipaya had been attributed to the evil powers of the Urus, a group usually regarded with suspicion by the other ethnic groups. Those incarcerated were believed to be the chief sorcerers and vampires whose paganistic practices had brought death to Chipaya by upsetting the social order. Wachtel's investigation, told in Gods and Vampires: Back to Chipaya, reveals much about relations between the Urus and the region's dominant ethnic groups and confronts some of the most trenchant issues in contemporary anthropology. His analysis shows that the Urus had become victims of the same set of ideals the Spanish had used, centuries before, to establish their hegemony in the region.
Presented as a personal detective story, Gods and Vampires is Wachtel's latest work in a series studying the ongoing impact of the Spanish conquest on the Andean consciousness and social system. Its insight into Bolivian society and the legacy of hegemony confronts some of the most trenchant issues in contemporary anthropologyand will be of great interest to scholars of anthropology, Latin American studies, and Native American studies.
The Highlands Controversy is a rich and perceptive account of the third and last major dispute in nineteenth-century geology stemming from the work of Sir Roderick Murchison. The earlier Devonian and Cambrian-Silurian controversies centered on whether the strata of Devon and Wales should be classified by lithological or paleontological criteria, but the Highlands dispute arose from the difficulties the Scottish Highlands presented to geologists who were just learning to decipher the very complex processes of mountain building and metamorphism. David Oldroyd follows this controversy into the last years of the nineteenth century, as geology was transformed by increasing professionalization and by the development of new field and laboratory techniques. In telling this story, Oldroyd's aim is to analyze how scientific knowledge is constructed within a competitive scientific community—how theory, empirical findings, and social factors interact in the formation of knowledge.
Oldroyd uses archival material and his own extensive reconstruction of the nineteenth-century fieldwork in a case study showing how detailed maps and sections made it possible to understand the exceptionally complex geological structure of the Highlands
An invaluable addition to the history of geology, The Highlands Controversy also makes important contributions to our understanding of the social and conceptual processes of scientific work, especially in times of heated dispute.
I Swear I Saw This records visionary anthropologist Michael Taussig’s reflections on the fieldwork notebooks he kept through forty years of travels in Colombia. Taking as a starting point a drawing he made in Medellin in 2006—as well as its caption, “I swear I saw this”—Taussig considers the fieldwork notebook as a type of modernist literature and the place where writers and other creators first work out the imaginative logic of discovery.
Notebooks mix the raw material of observation with reverie, juxtaposed, in Taussig’s case, with drawings, watercolors, and newspaper cuttings, which blend the inner and outer worlds in a fashion reminiscent of Brion Gysin and William Burroughs’s surreal cut-up technique. Focusing on the small details and observations that are lost when writers convert their notes into finished pieces, Taussig calls for new ways of seeing and using the notebook as form. Memory emerges as a central motif in I Swear I Saw This as he explores his penchant to inscribe new recollections in the margins or directly over the original entries days or weeks after an event. This palimpsest of afterthoughts leads to ruminations on Freud’s analysis of dreams, Proust’s thoughts on the involuntary workings of memory, and Benjamin’s theories of history—fieldwork, Taussig writes, provokes childhood memories with startling ease.
I Swear I Saw This exhibits Taussig’s characteristic verve and intellectual audacity, here combined with a revelatory sense of intimacy. He writes, “drawing is thus a depicting, a hauling, an unraveling, and being impelled toward something or somebody.” Readers will exult in joining Taussig once again as he follows the threads of a tangled skein of inspired associations.
Scholars have long recognized that ethnographic method is bound up with the construction of theory in ways that are difficult to teach. The reason, Allaine Cerwonka and Liisa H. Malkki argue, is that ethnographic theorization is essentially improvisatory in nature, conducted in real time and in necessarily unpredictable social situations. In a unique account of, and critical reflection on, the process of theoretical improvisation in ethnographic research, they demonstrate how both objects of analysis, and our ways of knowing and explaining them, are created and discovered in the give and take of real life, in all its unpredictability and immediacy.
Improvising Theory centers on the year-long correspondence between Cerwonka, then a graduate student in political science conducting research in Australia, and her anthropologist mentor, Malkki. Through regular e-mail exchanges, Malkki attempted to teach Cerwonka, then new to the discipline, the basic tools and subtle intuition needed for anthropological fieldwork. The result is a strikingly original dissection of the processual ethics and politics of method in ethnography.
The tale of Paul Stoller's sojourn among sorcerors in the Republic of Niger is a story of growth and change, of mutual respect and understanding that will challenge all who read it to plunge deeply into an alien world.
Context and situation always matter in both human and animal lives. Unique insights can be gleaned from conducting scientific studies from within human communities and animal habitats. Inside Science is a novel treatment of this distinctive mode of fieldwork. Robert E. Kohler illuminates these resident practices through close analyses of classic studies: of Trobriand Islanders, Chicago hobos, corner boys in Boston’s North End, Jane Goodall’s chimpanzees of the Gombe Stream Reserve, and more. Intensive firsthand observation; a preference for generalizing from observed particulars, rather than from universal principles; and an ultimate framing of their results in narrative form characterize these inside stories from the field.
Resident observing takes place across a range of sciences, from anthropology and sociology to primatology, wildlife ecology, and beyond. What makes it special, Kohler argues, is the direct access it affords scientists to the contexts in which their subjects live and act. These scientists understand their subjects not by keeping their distance but by living among them and engaging with them in ways large and small. This approach also demonstrates how science and everyday life—often assumed to be different and separate ways of knowing—are in fact overlapping aspects of the human experience. This story-driven exploration is perfect for historians, sociologists, and philosophers who want to know how scientists go about making robust knowledge of nature and society.
This entertaining collection of essays from professional scientists and naturalists provides an enlightening look at the lives of field biologists with a passion for the hidden world of nocturnal wildlife. Into the Night explores the harrowing, fascinating, amusing, and largely unheard personal experiences of scientists willing to forsake the safety of daylight to document the natural history of these uniquely adapted animals.
Contributors tell of confronting North American bears, cougars, and rattlesnakes; suffering red ctenid spider bites in the tropical rain forest; swimming through layers of feeding-frenzied hammerhead sharks in the Galapagos; evading the wrath of African bull elephants in South Africa; and delighting in the curious and gentle nature of foxes and unconditional acceptance by a family of owls. They describe “fire in the sky” across a treeless tundra, a sea ablaze with bioluminescent algae, nighttime earthquakes on the Pacific Rim, and hurricanes and erupting volcanoes on a Caribbean island.
Into the Night reveals rare and unexpected insights into nocturnal field research, illuminating experiences, discoveries, and challenges faced by intrepid biologists studying nature’s nightly marvels across the globe. This volume will be of interest to scientists and general readers alike.
For the late Fuad I. Khuri, a distinguished career as an anthropologist began not because of typical concerns like accessibility, money, or status, but because the very idea of an occupation that baffled his countrymen made them—and him—laugh. “When I tell them that ‘anthropology’ is my profession . . . they think I am either speaking a strange language or referring to a new medicine.” This profound appreciation for humor, especially in the contradictions inherent in the study of cultures, is a distinctive theme of An Invitation to Laughter, Khuri’s astute memoir of life as an anthropologist in the Middle East.
A Christian Lebanese, Khuri offers up in this unusual autobiography both an insider’s and an outsider’s perspective on life in Lebanon, elsewhere in the Middle East, and in West Africa. Khuri entertains and informs with clever insights into such issues as the mentality of Arabs toward women, eating habits of the Arab world, the impact of Islam on West Africa, and the extravagant lifestyles of wealthy Arabs, and even offers a vision for a type of democracy that could succeed in the Middle East. In his life and work, as these astonishing essays make evident, Khuri demonstrated how the discipline of anthropology continues to make a difference in bridging dangerous divides.
In this fascinating and vivid account, Peter M. Gardner takes us along with him on his anthropological field research trips. Usually, the author’s family is there, too, either with him in the field or somewhere nearby. Family adventures are part of it all. Travel into the unknown can be terrifying yet stimulating, and Gardner describes his own adventures, sharing medical and travel emergencies, magical fights, natural dangers, playful friends, and satisfying scientific discoveries. Along the way, we also learn how Gardner adapted to the isolation he sometimes faced and how he coped with the numerous crises that arose during his travels, including his tiny son’s bout with cholera.
Because Gardner’s primary research since 1962 has been with hunter-gatherers, much of his story transpires either in the equatorial jungle of south India or more than one hundred miles beyond the end of the road in Canada’s Northwest Territories. Other ventures transport readers to Japan and back to India, allowing them to savor ancient sights and sounds. Gardner closes the book with a journey of quite another sort, as he takes us into the world of nature, Taoist philosophy, and the experimental treatment of advanced cancer.
Throughout this fast-moving book, Gardner deftly describes the goals and techniques of his research, as well as his growing understanding of the cultures to which he was exposed. Few personal accounts of fieldwork describe enough of the research to give a complete sense of the experience in the way this book does. Anyone with an interest in travel and adventure, including the student of anthropology as well as the general reader, will be totally intrigued by Gardner’s story, one of a daily existence so very different from our own.
Journeys with Flies
Edwin N. Wilmsen University of Chicago Press, 1999 Library of Congress GN34.3.F53W55 1999 | Dewey Decimal 301.0723
From 1973 to 1994, anthropologist Edwin Wilmsen lived and worked among the Zhu, Mbanduru, and Tswana people of the Kalahari desert in southern Africa. Thousands of miles from his home, immersed in what first seemed a radically different place, and operating in languages he initially did not understand, he began a record of his impressions and reflections as a complement to his scientific fieldwork. Journeys with Flies weaves together the multilayered experiences of his life among these Kalahari people, capturing at once the intellectual challenges an anthropologist faces in the field and the myriad and strange ways that unfamiliar experiences come to resonate with deeply personal thoughts and recollections.
Combining biography, poetry, and anthropology, Wilmsen vividly portrays the intense realities of life in the Kalahari and carries the reader across space and time as events in the present trigger emotions and memories. Images of apartheid, for example, evoke memories of Wilmsen's childhood in the segregated South. Poems, journal entries, and moving accounts of deepening personal relationships all intertwine as Wilmsen conveys the experiences he shares with his "subjects" in spite of vast differences in their backgrounds—extreme thirst under the desert sun, grief over the death of a child, and the constant irritation of ubiquitous flies.
"Our understanding of other peoples," he writes, "lies not in themselves or in anything that they do but in our experience of them. Experience that is lived partly in their world and partly in a shell of our world that we wear when we meet them."
Sophisticated, lyrical, and passionately written, Journeys with Flies will inspire all those who travel to places far from home.
Knowing Global Environments brings together nine leading scholars whose work spans a variety of environmental and field sciences, including archaeology, agriculture, botany, climatology, ecology, evolutionary biology, oceanography, ornithology, and tidology.
Collectively their essays explore the history of the field sciences, through the lens of place, practice, and the production of scientific knowledge, with a wide-ranging perspective extending outwards from the local to regional, national, imperial, and global scales. The book also shows what the history of the field sciences can contribute to environmental history-especially how knowledge in the field sciences has intersected with changing environments-and addresses key present-day problems related to sustainability, such as global climate, biodiversity, oceans, and more.
Contributors to Knowing Global Environments reveal how the field sciences have interacted with practical economic activities, such as forestry, agriculture, and tourism, as well as how the public has been involved in the field sciences, as field assistants, students, and local collaborators.
What is it like to do field biology in a world that exalts experiments and laboratories? How have field biologists assimilated laboratory values and practices, and crafted an exact, quantitative science without losing their naturalist souls?
In Landscapes and Labscapes, Robert E. Kohler explores the people, places, and practices of field biology in the United States from the 1890s to the 1950s. He takes readers into the fields and forests where field biologists learned to count and measure nature and to read the imperfect records of "nature's experiments." He shows how field researchers use nature's particularities to develop "practices of place" that achieve in nature what laboratory researchers can only do with simplified experiments. Using historical frontiers as models, Kohler shows how biologists created vigorous new border sciences of ecology and evolutionary biology.
A down-to-earth, practical guide for interview and participant observation and analysis.
In-depth interviews and close observation are essential to the work of social scientists, but inserting one’s researcher-self into the lives of others can be daunting, especially early on. Esteemed sociologist Annette Lareau is here to help. Lareau’s clear, insightful, and personal guide is not your average methods text. It promises to reduce researcher anxiety while illuminating the best methods for first-rate research practice.
As the title of this book suggests, Lareau considers listening to be the core element of interviewing and observation. A researcher must listen to people as she collects data, listen to feedback as she describes what she is learning, listen to the findings of others as they delve into the existing literature on topics, and listen to herself in order to sift and prioritize some aspects of the study over others. By listening in these different ways, researchers will discover connections, reconsider assumptions, catch mistakes, develop and assess new ideas, weigh priorities, ponder new directions, and undertake numerous adjustments—all of which will make their contributions clearer and more valuable.
Accessibly written and full of practical, easy-to-follow guidance, this book will help both novice and experienced researchers to do their very best work. Qualitative research is an inherently uncertain project, but with Lareau’s help, you can alleviate anxiety and focus on success.
Living Folklore is a comprehensive, straightforward introduction to folklore as it is lived, shared and practiced in contemporary settings. Drawing on examples from diverse American groups and experiences, this text gives the student a strong foundation—from the field's history and major terms to theories and interpretive approaches.
Living Folklore moves beyond genres and classifications, and encourages students who are new to the field to see the study of folklore as a unique approach to understanding people, communities, and day-to-day artistic communication.
This revised edition incorporates new examples, research, and theory along with added discussion of digital and online folklore.
Living Folklore is a comprehensive, straightforward introduction to folklore as it is lived, shared and practiced in contemporary settings. Drawing on examples from diverse American groups and experiences, this text gives the student a strong foundation—from the field’s history and major terms to theories, interpretive approaches, and fieldwork.
Many teachers of undergraduates find the available folklore textbooks too complex or unwieldy for an introductory level course. It is precisely this criticism that Living Folklore addresses; while comprehensive and rigorous, the book is specifically intended to meet the needs of those students who are just beginning their study of the discipline. Its real strength lies in how it combines carefully articulated foundational concepts with relevant examples and a student-oriented teaching philosophy.
Kiriwina, the largest of the Trobriand Islands in eastern Papua New Guinea, is anthropology's "sacred place." It was here that Bronislaw Malinowski conducted the path-breaking fieldwork that enabled him to revolutionize British social anthropology. And it was here that he developed one of anthropology's most important tools: photography.
Malinowski's Kiriwina presents nearly two hundred of Malinowski's previously unpublished photographs, taken between 1915 and 1918, of the Trobriand Islanders. The images are more than embellishments of his ethnography; they are a recreation in striking detail of a distant world. Michael Young, an anthropologist and Malinowski's authorized biographer, has selected the photographs based on one of Malinowski's unpublished studies of the region, and the plan of that abandoned project has helped structure this book.
Divided into fourteen sections, Malinowski's Kiriwina is a series of linked photo-essays based on Trobriand institutions and cultural themes as described by Malinowski. The introductory essay by Young appraises the founding anthropologist's photographic oeuvre, explains the historical circumstances and technical aspects of the images, and puts them in their colonial context. Young illuminates the photographs with quotations from Malinowski's diaries, letters, and field notes, thereby giving a biographical dimension to the collection. Commentaries on the images by contemporary Trobrianders add a further layer of interpretation. The result is a stunning record not only of a fascinating place, but of the mutual relationship between ethnography and the visual.
In 1936 anthropologist Margaret Mead and her husband, Gregory Bateson, retreated from lowland Bali, which was the focal point of much scholarly and tourist activity, to the remote village of Bayung Gedé in the island's central highlands. Although they wrote relatively little about their work in this place, which Mead called "our village, way up in the mountains, a lovely self-contained village," they did leave behind a remarkably rich and extensive photographic record of their time there.
Margaret Mead, Gregory Bateson, and Highland Bali includes 200 photographs that the couple took between 1936 and 1939, the vast majority of which have never before been published. They vividly capture the everyday lives of the men, women, and children of Bayung Gedé, their homes and their temples, and many other fascinating details of village life not featured in Mead and Bateson's publications.
In a substantial introductory essay, Gerald Sullivan, who selected the photographs, uses excerpts from fieldnotes and correspondence to illuminate Mead and Bateson's ethnographic work. Tracing the project from its inception in their proposals to the publication of their work, Sullivan shows how they used the photographs both as fieldnotes and as elements in their theoretical argument. Finally, he explores what the photographs reveal—independently of Mead and Bateson's project—about the Balinese character to the contemporary viewer.
The result is a both a substantial contribution to visual anthropology and an invaluable supplement to the published works of Margaret Mead and Gregory Bateson.
The postmodern opposition between theory and lived reality has led in part to an anthropological turn to "dialogic" or "reflexive" approaches. Michael Jackson claims these approaches are hardly radical as they still drift into such abstractions as "society" or "culture." His Minima Ethnographica proposes an existential anthropology that recognizes even abstract relationships as modalities of interpersonal life.
Written in the style of Theodor Adorno's Minima Moralia, Jackson's work shows how general ideas are always anchored in particular social events and critical concerns. Emphasizing the intersubjective encounter over objective descriptions of the whole historical and contemporary situation of a given people, he illustrates the power and originality of existential anthropology through a series of vignettes from his fieldwork in Sierra Leone and Australia. An award-winning poet, novelist, and anthropologist, Jackson offers a timely critique of conventions that dull our sense of the links between academic study and lived experience.
The heated national conversation about gender equality and women in the workforce is something that women in academia have been concerned with and writing about for at least a decade. Overall, the conversation has focused on identifying how women in general and mothers in particular fair in the academy as a whole, as well as offering tips on how to maximize success. Aside from a long-standing field-specific debate in anthropology, rare are the volumes focusing on the particulars of motherhood’s impacts on how scientific research is conducted, particularly when it comes to field research.
Mothering from the Field offers both a mosaic of perspectives from current women scientists’ experiences of conducting field research across a variety of sub-disciplines while raising children, and an analytical framework to understand how we can redefine methodological and theoretical contributions based on mothers’ experiences in order not just to promote healthier, more inclusive, nurturing, and supportive environments in physical, life, and social sciences, but also to revolutionize how we conceptualize research.
In her late thirties, Gretchen Newberry left her office job in Portland, Oregon, to become a wildlife biologist studying nighthawks. The common nighthawk, Chordeiles minor, has long fascinated birders, scientists, farmers, and anyone who has awoken to its raspy calls on a hot city night. In The Nighthawk’s Evening, Newberry charts her journey across North America to study these birds, from the islands of British Columbia to rooftops in South Dakota, Oregon sagebrush, and Wisconsin forests.
This acrobatic, night-flying bird nests on rooftops and flocks in the thousands as it migrates from Alaska to Argentina and back every year. Nighthawks are strange animals, reptiles with feathers, sleepy during the day, but quick, agile, and especially adept at survival. They have the ability to withstand extreme temperatures and adapt to many habitats, but they are struggling for survival in the Anthropocene.
Newberry’s story focuses on the bird itself—its complex conservation status and cultural significance—and the larger, often hidden world of nocturnal animals. Along the way, she gives readers insight into the daily life of a scientist, especially one who works primarily at night. The Nighthawk’s Evening uses one scientist and one species to explore the challenges, disappointments, and successes of scientific research and conservation efforts. An accessible work of science, it will appeal to birders, students, wildlife managers, and anyone who is fascinated by urban wildlife.
Unique in ethnography, Nurturing Doubt documents the transforming effects of field experiences on a young Mennonite who went to Argentina to work with the Toba, first as a missionary and later as an anthropologist. Elmer Miller insightfully probes the documents--diaries, field journals, and letters--of both his lives, revealing as he does the ways in which his perceptions of the Toba--and theirs of him--changed when his role changed. Deeply affected by an upbringing in which he had been taught that doubting was "sinful," Miller gradually found that he doubted not only the validity of the missionary mandate but also his ethnographic mandate and the whole practice of anthropology. His exploration of how his doubt was transformed from a negative activity into a positive philosophical attitude underscores the richness of his relationships with the Toba. In depicting the move from theological to anthropological discourse, Miller contributes to current debates over the form and purpose of ethnographic investigation and reporting.
History of Anthropology is a new series of annual volumes, each of which will treat an important theme in the history of anthropological inquiry. For this initial volume, the editors have chosen to focus on the modern cultural anthropology: intensive fieldwork by "participant observation." Observers Observed includes essays by a distinguished group of historians and anthropologists covering major episodes in the history of ethnographic fieldwork in the American, British, and French traditions since 1880. As the first work to investigate the development of modern fieldwork in a serious historical way, this collection will be of great interest and value to anthropologist, historians of science and the social sciences, and the general readers interested in the way in which modern anthropologists have perceived and described the cultures of "others." Included in this volume are the contributions of Homer G. Barnett, University of Oregon; James Clifford, University of California, Santa Cruz; Douglas Cole, Simon Frazer University; Richard Handler, Lake Forest College; Curtis Hinsley, Colgate University; Joan Larcom, Mount Holyoke College; Paul Rabinow, University of California, Berkeley; and the editor.
"Definitive and well-rounded. . . . Explores how anthropologists
manage issues of identity and sexuality in field research and professional
life. In an era when the field worker's positionality is critical to research
and ethnographic writing, this insightful book has much to say to gay
and straight researchers alike." -- Louise Lamphere, University of
"Addresses sensitive, controversial, and tabooed subjects. . . . Out in the Field will be read by a variety of audiences, within
and outside of anthropology." -- Jean Jackson, Massachusetts Institute
Lesbian and gay anthropologists write candidly in Out in the Field
about their research and personal experiences in conducting fieldwork,
about the ethical and intellectual dilemmas they face in writing about
lesbian or gay populations, and about the impact on their careers of doing
The first volume in which lesbian and gay anthropologists discuss personal
experiences, Out in the Field offers compelling illustrations of
professional lives both closeted and out to colleagues and fieldwork informants.
It also concerns aligning career goals with personal sexual preferences
and speaks directly to issues of representation and authority currently
being explored throughout the social sciences.
CONTRIBUTORS: Geoffrey Burkhart, Liz Goodman, Delores M. Walters, Walter
L. Williams, Sabine Lang, Ellen Lewin, William L. Leap, Ralph Bolton,
Elizabeth Lapovsky Kennedy, Madeline Davis, Will Roscoe, Esther Newton,
Stephen O. Murray, James Wafer, Kath Weston, Sue-Ellen Jacobs
This suspenseful and moving memoir of Africa recounts the experiences of Alma Gottlieb, an anthropologist, and Philip Graham, a fiction writer, as they lived in two remote villages in the rain forest of Cote d'Ivoire. With an unusual coupling of first-person narratives, their alternate voices tell a story imbued with sweeping narrative power, humility, and gentle humor. Parallel Worlds is a unique look at Africa, anthropological fieldwork, and the artistic process.
"A remarkable look at a remote society [and] an engaging memoir that testifies to a loving partnership . . . compelling."—James Idema, Chicago Tribune
During World War II, over thirty American anthropologists participated in empirical and applied research on more than 110,000 Japanese Americans subjected to mass removal and incarceration by the federal government. While that experience has been widely discussed, what has received little critical attention are the experiences of the Japanese and Japanese American field assistants who conducted extensive research within the camps. How did these field researchers carry out data collection in American-style concentration camps? What kinds of constraints and pressures did they face? How did they respond to practical, ethical, and political challenges?
In addressing these questions, author Lane Hirabayashi examines the case of the late Dr. Tamie Tsuchiyama. At the time an advanced doctoral student in anthropology, Tsuchiyama was hired in 1942 to conduct ethnographic fieldwork for the University of California at Berkeley's Japanese American Evacuation and Resettlement Study. Drawing from personal letters, ethnographic fieldnotes, reports, interviews, and other archival sources, The Politics of Fieldwork describes Tsuchiyama's experiences as a researcher at Poston, Arizona—a.k.a. the Colorado River Relocation Center. The book relates the daily life, fieldwork methodology, and politics of the residents and researchers at the Poston camp, as well as providing insight into the pressures that led to Tsuchiyama's ultimate resignation, in protest, from the JERS project in 1945.
Facilitating the critical analysis of Tsuchiyama's role in the JERS research are questions regarding the relationships between Japanese American research and the nature of "colonial science" that merit discussion in contemporary field research. A multidisciplinary synthesis of anthropological, historical, and ethnic studies perspectives, The Politics of Fieldwork is rich with lessons about the ethics and politics of ethnographic fieldwork.
Kemi Adeyemi, Kareem Khubchandani, Ramón H. Rivera-Servera, Editors University of Michigan Press, 2021 Library of Congress GT3408.Q84 2021 | Dewey Decimal 307.76
The mass shooting at a queer Latin Night in Orlando in July 2016 sparked a public conversation about access to pleasure and selfhood within conditions of colonization, violence, and negation. Queer Nightlife joins this conversation by centering queer and trans people of color who apprehend the risky medium of the night to explore, know, and stage their bodies, genders, and sexualities in the face of systemic and social negation. The book focuses on house parties, nightclubs, and bars that offer improvisatory conditions and possibilities for “stranger intimacies,” and that privilege music, dance, and sexual/gender expressions. Queer Nightlife extends the breadth of research on “everynight life” through twenty-five essays and interviews by leading scholars and artists. The book’s four sections move temporally from preparing for the night (how do DJs source their sounds, what does it take to travel there, who promotes nightlife, what do people wear?); to the socialities of nightclubs (how are social dance practices introduced and taught, how is the price for sex negotiated, what styles do people adopt to feel and present as desirable?); to the staging and spectacle of the night (how do drag artists confound and celebrate gender, how are spaces designed to create the sensation of spectacularity, whose bodies become a spectacle already?); and finally, how the night continues beyond the club and after sunrise (what kinds of intimacies and gestures remain, how do we go back to the club after Orlando?).
Half a century ago, when archaeologist Jeffrey R. Parsons began fieldwork in Mexico and Peru, he could not know that many of the sites he studied were on the brink of destruction. The rural landscapes through which he traveled were, in many cases, destined to be plowed under and paved over. In Remembering Archaeological Fieldwork in Mexico and Peru, 1961–2003, Parsons offers readers a chance to see archaeological sites that were hundreds or thousands of years old and have since vanished or been irrevocably altered. Hundreds of photographs, accompanied by descriptions, illustrate the sites, the people, and the landscapes that Parsons encountered during four decades of research in these regions. Parsons is now emeritus professor of anthropology at the University of Michigan and has published many archaeological monographs as well as ethnographic research on salt, fish, and other items used for traditional subsistence in Mexico. Foreword by Richard I. Ford.
Resonance gathers together forty years of anthropological study by a researcher and writer with one of the broadest fieldwork résumés in anthropology: Unni Wikan. In its twelve essays—four of which are brand new—Resonance covers encounters with transvestites in Oman, childbirth in Bhutan, poverty in Cairo, and honor killings in Scandinavia, with visits to several other locales and subjects in between. Including a comprehensive preface and introduction that brings the whole work into focus, Resonance surveys an astonishing career of anthropological inquiry that demonstrates the possibility for a common humanity, a way of knowing others on their own terms.
Deploying Clifford Geertz’s concept of “experience-near” observations —and driven by an ambition to work beyond Geertz’s own limitations—Wikan strives for an anthropology that sees, describes, and understands the human condition in the models and concepts of the people being observed. She highlights the fundamentals of an explicitly comparative, person-centered, and empathic approach to fieldwork, pushing anthropology to shift from the specialist discourses of academic experts to a grasp of what the Balinese call keneh— the heart, thought, and feeling of the real people of the world. By deploying this strategy across such a range of sites and communities, she provides a powerful argument that ever-deeper insight can be attained despite our differences.
What does a move from a village in the West African rain forest to a West African community in a European city entail? What about a shift from a Greek sheep-herding community to working with evictees and housing activists in Rome and Bangkok? In The Restless Anthropologist, Alma Gottlieb brings together eight eminent scholars to recount the riveting personal and intellectual dynamics of uprooting one’s life—and decades of work—to embrace a new fieldsite.
Addressing questions of life-course, research methods, institutional support, professional networks, ethnographic models, and disciplinary paradigm shifts, the contributing writers of The Restless Anthropologist discuss the ways their earlier and later projects compare on both scholarly and personal levels, describing the circumstances of their choices and the motivations that have emboldened them to proceed, to become novices all over again. In doing so, they question some of the central expectations of their discipline, reimagining the space of the anthropological fieldsite at the heart of their scholarly lives.
Dean Arnold takes readers on a journey into the Andes, recounting the adventures of his 1960s research in the village of Quinua, Peru. Arnold’s quest to understand how contemporary pottery production reflected current Quinua society as well as its ancient Inca and pre-Inca past is one of the earliest studies in what later became known as ethnoarchaeology.
This first-person narrative reveals the challenges of living and working in another culture and the many obstacles one can encounter while doing field research. Arnold shares how his feelings of frustration and perceived failure led him to refocus his project, a shift that ultimately led to an entirely new perspective on pottery production in the Andes. Masterfully weaving details about Peru’s geography, ecology, history, prehistory, and culture into his story, he chronicles his change from small-town Midwesterner to a person of much broader vision, newly aware of his North American views and values.
Retracing Inca Steps is an excellent read for the lay person wishing to learn about the environment, prehistory, history, and culture of Peru as well as for students wanting to know more about the joys and rigors of fieldwork.
When culture makes itself at home in motion, where does an anthropologist stand? In a follow-up to The Predicament of Culture, one of the defining books for anthropology in the last decade, James Clifford takes the proper measure: a moving picture of a world that doesn’t stand still, that reveals itself en route, in the airport lounge and the parking lot as much as in the marketplace and the museum.
In this collage of essays, meditations, poems, and travel reports, Clifford takes travel and its difficult companion, translation, as openings into a complex modernity. He contemplates a world ever more connected yet not homogeneous, a global history proceeding from the fraught legacies of exploration, colonization, capitalist expansion, immigration, labor mobility, and tourism. Ranging from Highland New Guinea to northern California, from Vancouver to London, he probes current approaches to the interpretation and display of non-Western arts and cultures. Wherever people and things cross paths and where institutional forces work to discipline unruly encounters, Clifford’s concern is with struggles to displace stereotypes, to recognize divergent histories, to sustain “postcolonial” and “tribal” identities in contexts of domination and globalization.
Travel, diaspora, border crossing, self-location, the making of homes away from home: these are transcultural predicaments for the late twentieth century. The map that might account for them, the history of an entangled modernity, emerges here as an unfinished series of paths and negotiations, leading in many directions while returning again and again to the struggles and arts of cultural encounter, the impossible, inescapable tasks of translation.
In 1963 R. M. W. (Bob) Dixon set off for Australia, where he was to record, chart, and preserve several of the complex and nearly extinct Aboriginal languages. Beginning with his introduction to these languages while a graduate student at the University of Edinburgh and his difficulties in getting to the Australian bush, Dixon's fourteen-year tale is one of frustration and enlightenment, of setbacks and discoveries.
As he made his way through northern Australia, Dixon was dependent on rumors of Aboriginal speakers, the unreliable advice of white Australians, and the faulty memories of many of the remaining speakers of the languages. Suggestions of informants led him on a circuitous trail through the bush, to speakers such as the singer Willie Kelly in Ravenshoe, who wanted his recordings sent to the south, "where white people would pay big money to hear a genuine Aborigine sing" and Chloe Grant in Murray Upper, who told tales in four dialects of digging wild yams, of the blue-tongue lizard Banggara, and of the arrival of Captain Cook. Dixon tells of obtaining the trust of possible informants, of learning the customs and terrain of the country, and of growing understanding of the culture and tradition of his subjects. And he explains his surprise at his most unexpected discovery: that the rich oral tradition of the "primitive" Aborigines could yield a history of a people, as told by that people, that dates to almost ten millenia before.
Sex in the field—the dilemma of whether to cover up or display sexual identities and desires during the course of anthropological fieldwork—is one of the best-kept secrets in the discipline. Contending that the conventional pose of a genderless, asexual, ethnographic researcher is impossible to sustain, this volume brings sex and sexuality into the open as essential components of ethnographic study that must be overtly recognized and proactively addressed. Sex, Sexuality, and the Anthropologist recounts the real-life experiences of anthropologists who are forced to acknowledge that their hosts in the field view them as gendered beings in a social context, not as asexual, objective observers. Far from controlling the research environment and defining the terms of interviewer-informant relationships, these researchers find they must engage in a process of negotiating their position—including their sexual position—within the communities they study.
Ranging from public baths in Austria to lesbian bars in Taiwan and from Mexico to Nigeria to Finland to Japan, Sex, Sexuality, and the Anthropologist raises critical questions about ethnographers' reflexivity, subjectivity, and detachment, confronting the challenge of a holistic approach to the anthropological enterprise.
Anthropology is by definition about "others," but in this volume the phrase refers not to members of observed cultures, but to "significant others"—spouses, lovers, and others with whom anthropologists have deep relationships that are both personal and professional. The essays in this volume look at the roles of these spouses and partners of anthropologists over the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, especially their work as they accompanied the anthropologists in the field. Other relationships discussed include those between anthropologists and informants, mentors and students, cohorts and partners, and parents and children. The book closes with a look at gender roles in the field, demonstrated by the "marriage" in the late nineteenth century of the male Anthropological Society of Washington to the Women’s Anthropological Society of America. Revealing relationships that were simultaneously deeply personal and professionally important, these essays bring a new depth of insight to the history of anthropology as a social science and human endeavor.
The state has recently been rediscovered as an object of inquiry by a broad range of scholars. Reflecting the new vitality of the field of political anthropology, States of Imagination draws together the best of this recent critical thinking to explore the postcolonial state. Contributors focus on a variety of locations from Guatemala, Pakistan, and Peru to India and Ecuador; they study what the state looks like to those seeing it from the vantage points of rural schools, police departments, small villages, and the inside of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Focusing on the micropolitics of everyday state-making, the contributors examine the mythologies, paradoxes, and inconsistencies of the state through ethnographies of diverse postcolonial practices. They show how the authority of the state is constantly challenged from the local as well as the global and how growing demands to confer rights and recognition to ever more citizens, organizations, and institutions reveal a persistent myth of the state as a source of social order and an embodiment of popular sovereignty. Demonstrating the indispensable value of ethnographic work on the practices and the symbols of the state, States of Imagination showcases a range of studies and methods to provide insight into the diverse forms of the postcolonial state as an arena of both political and cultural struggle. This collection will interest students and scholars of anthropology, cultural studies, sociology, political science, and history.
Contributors. Lars Buur, Mitchell Dean, Akhil Gupta, Thomas Blom Hansen, Steffen Jensen, Aletta J. Norval, David Nugent, Sarah Radcliffe, Rachel Sieder, Finn Stepputat, Martijn van Beek, Oskar Verkaaik, Fiona Wilson
When we think of sites of animal research that symbolize modernity, the first places that come to mind are grand research institutes in cities and near universities that house the latest in equipment and technologies, not the surroundings of the bird’s nest, the octopus’s garden in the sea, or the parts of inland lakes in which freshwater plankton reside. Yet during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, a group of zoologists began establishing novel, indeed modern ways of studying nature, propagating what present-day ecologists describe as place-based research.
Raf De Bont’s Stations in the Field focuses on the early history of biological field stations and the role these played in the rise of zoological place-based research. Beginning in the 1870s, a growing number of biological field stations were founded—first in Europe and later elsewhere around the world—and thousands of zoologists received their training and performed their research at these sites. Through case studies, De Bont examines the material and social context in which field stations arose, the actual research that was produced in these places, the scientific claims that were developed there, and the rhetorical strategies that were deployed to convince others that these claims made sense. From the life of parasitic invertebrates in northern France and freshwater plankton in Schleswig-Holstein, to migratory birds in East Prussia and pest insects in Belgium, De Bont’s book is fascinating tour through the history of studying nature in nature.
The last traces of Australia's tropical rainforest, where the southeasterly winds bring rain to the coastal mountains, contain a unique assemblage of plants and animals, some primitive, many that are found nowhere else on earth. And fifteen years ago, they also contained Bill Laurance, a budding ecologist seduced by the nature of the landscape in north Queensland. Laurance isn't your typical scientist: he wears cut-offs instead of white coats, enjoys the occasional food fight, and isn't afraid to speak his mind, even if it gets him into trouble, as it often did in the Australian rainforest and as he recounts in his marvelous Queensland journal Stinging Trees and Wait-a-Whiles.
The book is his record of the time he spent in this remote area and his run-ins with plant, animal, and human species alike. Laurance lived in a tiny town of loggers and farmers, and he witnessed firsthand the impact of conservation issues on individual lives. He found himself at the center of a bitter battle over conservation strategies and became not only the subject of small-town gossip but also the object of many residents' hatred. Keeping ahead of his high-spirited young volunteers, hounded by the drug-sniffing local policeman, and all the while trying to further his own research amid natural and unnatural obstacles, Laurance offers us a personal and hilarious account of fieldwork and life in the Australian outpost of Millaa Millaa. Stinging Trees and Wait-a-Whiles is a biology lesson, a conservation primer, and an utterly energetic story about an impressionable young man who wound up at the epicenter of an issue that tore a small town apart.
Never has there been a president less content to sit still behind a desk than Theodore Roosevelt. When we picture him, he's on horseback or standing at a cliff’s edge or dressed for safari. And Roosevelt was more than just an adventurer—he was also a naturalist and campaigner for conservation. His love of the outdoor world began at an early age and was driven by a need not to simply observe nature but to be actively involved in the outdoors—to be in the field. As Michael R. Canfield reveals in Theodore Roosevelt in the Field, throughout his life Roosevelt consistently took to the field as a naturalist, hunter, writer, soldier, and conservationist, and it is in the field where his passion for science and nature, his belief in the manly, “strenuous life,” and his drive for empire all came together.
Drawing extensively on Roosevelt’s field notebooks, diaries, and letters, Canfield takes readers into the field on adventures alongside him. From Roosevelt’s early childhood observations of ants to his notes on ornithology as a teenager, Canfield shows how Roosevelt’s quest for knowledge coincided with his interest in the outdoors. We later travel to the Badlands, after the deaths of Roosevelt’s wife and mother, to understand his embrace of the rugged freedom of the ranch lifestyle and the Western wilderness. Finally, Canfield takes us to Africa and South America as we consider Roosevelt’s travels and writings after his presidency. Throughout, we see how the seemingly contradictory aspects of Roosevelt’s biography as a hunter and a naturalist are actually complementary traits of a man eager to directly understand and experience the environment around him.
As our connection to the natural world seems to be more tenuous, Theodore Roosevelt in the Field offers the chance to reinvigorate our enjoyment of nature alongside one of history’s most bold and restlessly curious figures.
For thirty years, the University of Arizona Archaeological Field School at Grasshopper—a 500-room Mogollon pueblo located on what is today the Fort Apache Indian Reservation in Arizona—probed the past, taught scholars of international repute, and generated controversy. This book offers an extraordinary window into a changing American archaeology and three different research programs as they confronted the same pueblo ruin.
Like the enigmatic Mogollon culture it sought to explore and earlier University of Arizona field schools in the Forestdale Valley and at Point of Pines, Grasshopper research engendered decades of controversy that still lingers in the pages of professional journals. Jefferson Reid and Stephanie Whittlesey, players in the controversy who are intimately familiar with the field school that ended in 1992, offer a historical account of this major archaeological project and the intellectual debates it fostered.
Thirty Years Into Yesterday charts the development of the Grasshopper program under three directors and through three periods dominated by distinct archaeological paradigms: culture history, processual archaeology, and behavioral archaeology. It examines the contributions made each season, the concepts and methods each paradigm used, and the successes and failures of each. The book transcends interests of southwestern archaeologists in demonstrating how the three archaeological paradigms reinterpreted Grasshopper, illustrating larger shifts in American archaeology as a whole. Such an opportunity will not come again, as funding constraints, ethical concerns, and other issues no doubt will preclude repeating the Grasshopper experience in our lifetimes.
Ultimately, Thirty Years Into Yesterday continues the telling of the Grasshopper story that was begun in the authors’ previous books. In telling the story of the archaeologists who recovered the material residue of past Mogollon lives and the place of the Western Apache people in their interpretations, Thirty Years Into Yesterday brings the story full circle to a stunning conclusion.
Field biology is enjoying a resurgence due to several factors, the most important being the realization that there is no ecology, no conservation, and no ecosystem restoration without an understanding of the basic relationships between species and their environments—an understanding gleaned only through field-based natural history. With this resurgence, modern field biologists find themselves asking fundamental existential questions such as: Where did we come from? What is our story? Are we part of a larger legacy? In This Land Is Your Land, seasoned field biologist Michael J. Lannoo answers these questions and more in a tale rooted in the people and institutions of the Midwest. It is a story told from the ground up, a rubber boot–based natural history of field biology in America.
Lannoo illuminates characters such as John Wesley Powell, William Temple Hornaday, and Olaus and Adolph Murie—homegrown midwestern field biologists who either headed east to populate major research centers or went west to conduct their fieldwork along the frontier. From the pioneering work of Victor Shelford, Henry Chandler Cowles, and Aldo Leopold to contemporary insights from biologists such as Jim Furnish and historians such as William Cronon, Lannoo’s unearthing of American—and particularly midwestern—field biologists reveals how these scientists influenced American ecology, conservation biology, and restoration ecology, and in turn drove global conservation efforts through environmental legislation and land set-asides. This Land Is Your Land reveals the little-known legacy of midwestern field biologists, whose ethos and discoveries have enabled us to preserve and understand not just their land, but all lands.
Tuhami is an illiterate Moroccan tilemaker who believes himself married to a camel-footed she-demon. A master of magic and a superb story-teller, Tuhami lives in a dank, windowless hovel near the kiln where he works. Nightly he suffers visitations from the demons and saints who haunt his life, and he seeks, with crippling ambivalence, liberation from 'A'isha Qandisha, the she-demon.
In a sensitive and bold experiment in interpretive ethnography, Crapanzano presents Tuhami's bizarre account of himself and his world. In so doing, Crapanzano draws on phenomenology, psychoanalysis, and symbolism to reflect upon the nature of reality and truth and to probe the limits of anthropology itself. Tuhami has become one of the most important and widely cited representatives of a new understanding of the whole discipline of anthropology.
Walter Benjamin's Grave
Michael Taussig University of Chicago Press, 2006 Library of Congress GN34.3.F53T38 2006 | Dewey Decimal 301.0723
In September 1940, Walter Benjamin committed suicide in Port Bou on the Spanish-French border when it appeared that he and his travelling partners would be denied passage into Spain in their attempt to escape the Nazis. In 2002, one of anthropology’s—and indeed today’s—most distinctive writers, Michael Taussig, visited Benjamin’s grave in Port Bou. The result is “Walter Benjamin’s Grave,” a moving essay about the cemetery, eyewitness accounts of Benjamin’s border travails, and the circumstances of his demise. It is the most recent of eight revelatory essays collected in this volume of the same name.
“Looking over these essays written over the past decade,” writes Taussig, “I think what they share is a love of muted and defective storytelling as a form of analysis. Strange love indeed; love of the wound, love of the last gasp.” Although thematically these essays run the gamut—covering the monument and graveyard at Port Bou, discussions of peasant poetry in Colombia, a pact with the devil, the peculiarities of a shaman’s body, transgression, the disappearance of the sea, New York City cops, and the relationship between flowers and violence—each shares Taussig’s highly individual brand of storytelling, one that depends on a deep appreciation of objects and things as a way to retrieve even deeper philosophical and anthropological meanings. Whether he finds himself in Australia, Colombia, Manhattan, or Spain, in the midst of a book or a beach, whether talking to friends or staring at a monument, Taussig makes clear through these marvelous essays that materialist knowledge offers a crucial alternative to the increasingly abstract, globalized, homogenized, and digitized world we inhabit.
Pursuing an adventure that is part ethnography, part autobiography, and part cultural criticism refracted through the object that is Walter Benjamin’s grave, Taussig, with this collection, provides his own literary memorial to the twentieth century’s greatest cultural critic.
In the heart of Wyoming sprawls the ancient homeland of the Eastern Shoshone Indians, who were forced by the U.S. government to share a reservation in the Wind River basin and flanking mountain ranges with their historical enemy, the Northern Arapahos. Both tribes lost their sovereign, wide-ranging ways of life and economic dependence on decimated buffalo. Tribal members subsisted on increasingly depleted numbers of other big game—deer, elk, moose, pronghorn, and bighorn sheep. In 1978, the tribal councils petitioned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to help them recover their wildlife heritage. Bruce Smith became the first wildlife biologist to work on the reservation. Wildlife on the Wind recounts how he helped Native Americans change the course of conservation for some of America's most charismatic wildlife.
Writing Ethnographic Fieldnotes
Robert M. Emerson, Rachel I. Fretz, and Linda L. Shaw University of Chicago Press, 1995 Library of Congress GN307.7.E44 1995 | Dewey Decimal 305.800723
In this companion volume John van Maanen's Tales of the Field, three scholars reveal how the ethnographer turns direct experience and observation into written fieldnotes upon which an ethnography is based.
Drawing on years of teaching and field research experience, the authors develop a series of guidelines, suggestions, and practical advice about how to write useful fieldnotes in a variety of settings, both cultural and institutional. Using actual unfinished, "working" notes as examples, they illustrate options for composing, reviewing, and working fieldnotes into finished texts. They discuss different organizational and descriptive strategies, including evocation of sensory detail, synthesis of complete scenes, the value of partial versus omniscient perspectives, and of first person versus third person accounts. Of particular interest is the author's discussion of notetaking as a mindset. They show how transforming direct observations into vivid descriptions results not simply from good memory but more crucially from learning to envision scenes as written. A good ethnographer, they demonstrate, must learn to remember dialogue and movement like an actor, to see colors and shapes like a painter, and to sense moods and rhythms like a poet.
The authors also emphasize the ethnographer's core interest in presenting the perceptions and meanings which the people studied attach to their own actions. They demonstrate the subtle ways that writers can make the voices of people heard in the texts they produce. Finally, they analyze the "processing" of fieldnotes—the practice of coding notes to identify themes and methods for selecting and weaving together fieldnote excerpts to write a polished ethnography.
This book, however, is more than a "how-to" manual. The authors examine writing fieldnotes as an interactive and interpretive process in which the researcher's own commitments and relationships with those in the field inevitably shape the character and content of those fieldnotes. They explore the conscious and unconscious writing choices that produce fieldnote accounts. And they show how the character and content of these fieldnotes inevitably influence the arguments and analyses the ethnographer can make in the final ethnographic tale.
This book shows that note-taking is a craft that can be taught. Along with Tales of the Field and George Marcus and Michael Fisher's Anthropology as Cultural Criticism, Writing Ethnographic Fieldnotes is an essential tool for students and social scientists alike.
In Writing Ethnographic Fieldnotes, Robert M. Emerson, Rachel I. Fretz, and Linda L. Shaw present a series of guidelines, suggestions, and practical advice for creating useful fieldnotes in a variety of settings, demystifying a process that is often assumed to be intuitive and impossible to teach. Using actual unfinished notes as examples, the authors illustrate options for composing, reviewing, and working fieldnotes into finished texts. They discuss different organizational and descriptive strategies and show how transforming direct observations into vivid descriptions results not simply from good memory but from learning to envision scenes as written. A good ethnographer, they demonstrate, must learn to remember dialogue and movement like an actor, to see colors and shapes like a painter, and to sense moods and rhythms like a poet.
This new edition reflects the extensive feedback the authors have received from students and instructors since the first edition was published in 1995. As a result, they have updated the race, class, and gender section, created new sections on coding programs and revising first drafts, and provided new examples of working notes. An essential tool for budding social scientists, the second edition of Writing Ethnographic Fieldnotes will be invaluable for a new generation of researchers entering the field.
As policing has recently become a major topic of public debate, it was also a growing area of ethnographic research. Writing the World of Policing brings together an international roster of scholars who have conducted fieldwork studies of law enforcement in disadvantaged urban neighborhoods on five continents. How, they ask, can ethnography illuminate the role of the police in society? Are there important aspects of policing that are not captured through interviews and statistics? And how can the study of law enforcement shed light on the practice of ethnography? What might studying policing teach us about the epistemological and ethical challenges of participant observation? Beyond these questions of crucial interest for criminology and, more generally, the social sciences, Writing the World of Policing provides a timely discussion of one of the most problematic institutions in contemporary society.
Around 400 BCE, inhabitants of the Southern Andes took up a sedentary lifestyle that included the practice of agriculture. Settlements were generally solitary or clustered structures with walled agricultural fields and animal corrals, and the first small villages appeared in some regions. Surprisingly, people were also producing and circulating exotic goods: polychrome ceramics, copper and gold ornaments, bronze bracelets and bells. To investigate the apparent contradiction between a lack of social complexity and the broad circulation of elaborated goods, archaeologist Joan Gero co-directed a binational project to excavate the site of Yutopian, an unusually well-preserved Early Formative village in the mountains of Northwest Argentina.
In Yutopian, Gero describes how archaeologists from the United States and Argentina worked with local residents to uncover the lifeways of the earliest sedentary people of the region. Gero foregounds many experiential aspects of archaeological fieldwork that are usually omitted in the archaeological literature: the tedious labor and constraints of time and personnel, the emotional landscape, the intimate ethnographic settings and Andean people, the socio-politics, the difficult decisions and, especially, the role that ambiguity plays in determining archaeological meanings. Gero’s unique approach offers a new model for the site report as she masterfully demonstrates how the decisions made in conducting any scientific undertaking play a fundamental role in shaping the knowledge produced in that project.