Approaches to Ethnography: Analysis and Representation in Participant Observation (Paperback)

Approaches to Ethnography: Analysis and Representation in Participant Observation By Colin Jerolmack (Editor), Shamus Khan (Editor) Cover Image
By Colin Jerolmack (Editor), Shamus Khan (Editor)
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No ethnographer can record and analyze everything that she encounters in the field. We must make choices about what to look at and how to look at it, which means privileging some aspects of social life while bracketing others. Approaches to Ethnography enumerates the key analytic strategies-which Jerolmack and Khan call approaches-that ethnographers deploy to tame the buzzing confusion of the social world. The book identifies eight approaches that typify ethnography, which it groups and compares along four axes: 1) Micro, organizational, and macro; 2) people and places, and mechanisms; 3) dispositions and situations; and 4) reflexivity. Each approach, it is shown, enables the illumination of a distinct dimension of the social world.

Every chapter is written by a seasoned ethnographer who enumerates one of the approaches and reflects on how that approach shapes their field site selection, observations, and analysis. Taken as a whole, the chapters show how these approaches, which operate more like sensitizing devices than theoretical mandates, can play a greater role in guiding the kinds of questions that get asked and answered in the field than whether one adopts an inductive or deductive stance toward theory. Engaging, accessible, and often inspiring, Approaches to Ethnography offers a practical and novel way to teach, evaluate, and conceptualize ethnographic research.

About the Author

Colin Jerolmack is Associate Professor of Sociology and Environmental Studies at New York University and the author of The Global Pigeon. His current ethnographic research project focuses on how shale gas extraction (fracking) impacts rural community life. Shamus Khan is an associate professor of sociology at Columbia University. He is the author of Privilege: The Making of an Adolescent Elite at St. Paul's School (Princeton, 2011), an ethnographic study of an elite boarding school, and coeditor of The Practice of Research: How Social Scientists Answer their Questions (with Dana Fisher, Oxford, 2013).
Product Details
ISBN: 9780190236052
ISBN-10: 0190236051
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
Publication Date: November 20th, 2017
Pages: 288
Language: English