SOC 234 - Ethnographic Fieldwork





This seminar offers an introduction to the practice, politics, and poetics of ethnographic fieldwork, the method of immersing oneself into people’s daily routines and systematically recording social processes as they unfold in real time.  Along with engaging with several classic and contemporary texts, you will collect, analyze, and argue with ethnographic data.  Over the course of this seminar, we will together grapple with questions such as the following.  What is “good” ethnography?  By what criteria does one evaluate fieldwork?  What kinds of questions is ethnography well suited to address?  What is ethnography’s unique contribution to the study of social problems and policy?  Can (and should) sociology as a whole become more “ethnographic” in theory, spirit, and method?  And how can we push ethnography forward?