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Being Here and Being There

Being Here and Being There
Fieldwork Encounters and Ethnographic Discoveries

Edited by:

August 2004 | 328 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

As students of culture, ethnographers must have curiosity, openness, and humility - three traits vital for "getting with"people. But how do ethnographers go about developing relationships with people in the field? And how do they learn from these people so they can conduct a systematic study of the culture?

These key questions can best be answered by sharing field experiences among a diverse group of ethnographers. Yet researchers often become so embedded in the extensive data collections, analysis, and writing that the opportunity rarely occurs to share experiences, fieldwork, and current projects. Leading ethnographers recognized the need for a forum where information could be exchanged.

The major ethnography conference (held at the University of Pennsylvania in November 2003) presented by established ethnographers along with graduate students the chance to participate in an exciting format where works-in-progress could be shared. This intimate setting built a bridge to take ethnography into the future while reestablishing ties to scholarly roots.

Using the Chicago School and its emphasis on "bringing back the news" from unknown or misknown social worlds as a foundation, these conferences created a buzz where information was freely shared and ethnographers connected. The University of Pennsylvania conference became the springboard for the articles in this special volume of The ANNALS.

Contemporary ethnography is much too large, too diverse, too contentious to be represented in its entirety in a single collection of articles. However, this weighty volume represents a distinctive approach to ethnography that seeks to engage, reassert, and reassess three recurring themes found in classic Chicago-style fieldwork:

I. The focus on discovery, rather than on theory or method

II. "Loyalty to the phenomenon" - emphasizing what people are actually doing versus what theory suggests people are doing

III. The collection of original data, as well as the collection of ethnographic data in original ways

This unique volume offers the rare chance to learn what ethnographers are doing in the field as well as the different approaches taken and styles used in conducting fieldwork. It also provides poignant insight for public policy students and practitioners.

The articles included in this volume reflect a wide range of stories and researchers from around the country and around the world. Taken together they provide the big picture of the challenges and boons of fieldwork and examined experiences.


Elijah Anderson, Scott N. Brooks, Raymond Gunn, and Nikki Jones

Robert M. Emerson
Elijah Anderson
The Cosmopolitan Canopy
Cindy D. Ness
Why Girls Fight: Female Youth Violence in the Inner City
Nikki Jones
It's Not Where You Live, It's How You Live": How Young Women Negotiate Conflict and Violence in the Inner City
Raymond Gunn
Inner-City "Schoolboy " Life
Scott N. Brooks
"Putting the Blessings on Him": Vouching and Basketball Status Work
Heli Vaaranen
The Emotional Experience of Class: Interpreting Working-Class Kids' Street Racing in Helsinki
Kathleen D. Hall
The Ethnography of Imagined Communities: The Cultural Production of Sikh Ethnicity in Britain
Octave Debary
Deindustrialization and Museumification: From Exhibited Memory to Forgotten History
Michele de La Pradelle and Emmanuelle Lallement
Paris Plage: "The City Is Ours"
Tukufu Zuberi
W.E.B. Du Bois's Sociology: The Philadelphia Negro and Social Science
Jean-Michel Chapoulie
Using the History of the Chicago Tradition of Sociology for Empirical Research
Henri Peretz
The Making of Black Metropolis
William Kornblum
Discovering Ink: A Mentor for an Historical Ethnography
Omar M. McRoberts
Beyond Mysterium Tremendum: Thoughts toward an Aesthetic Study of Religious Experience
Lawrence W. Sherman and Heather Strang
Experimental Ethnography: The Marriage of Qualitative and Ouantitative Research
Paul Willis
The Liberty Bell: A Meditiation on Labor, Liberty, and the Cultural Mediations That Connect or Disconnect Them
Charles L. Bosk and Raymond G. De Vries
Bureaucracies of Mass Deception: Institutional Review Boards and the Ethnics of Ethnographic Research
Howard S. Becker, Herbert J. Gans, Katherine S. Newman, and Diane Vaughan
On the Value of Ethnography: Sociology and Public Policy, a Dialogue
With Comments by

Jean-Michel Chapoulie
Jack Katz
On the Rhetoric and Politics of Ethnographic Methodology
Renee C. Fox
Observations and Reflections of a Perpetual Fieldworker
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ISBN: 9781412913959