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Ward Keeler

likely to want to learn about. Suppressing information about how the fieldwork encounter actually took place, this well-known critique asserts, dissembles the power imbalance between the anthropologist and his or her objects of study (cf. Clifford and

Open access

Feelings in the Field

The Emotional Labour of the Ethnographer

Maria Concetta Lo Bosco

Ethnographic fieldwork has defined anthropology both as a discipline and practice ( Gupta and Ferguson 1997 ). It is broadly conceived as that unique and irreplaceable rite of passage which will ultimately turn an apprentice anthropologist in a

Open access

Plans, Changes, Improvisations

Navigating Research on the Fertility Quests of Mozambican Women and Men

Inês Faria

In this article, I look at the pragmatics of the fieldwork process with a focus on my own personal experience. Rather than an analytical piece, as I have developed elsewhere ( Faria 2018 ), I opt here for a more descriptive and informal tone. I

Open access

Research Methodology in Kurdish Studies

Interactions between Fieldwork, Epistemology and Theory

Mehmet Orhan

domination and legitimation in societies, likely resulting from the separate discussion of theory and observation (see Shil's foreword to Weber 1949 ). This problem has certainly lessened due to the development of methodological and fieldwork techniques

Open access

Chiara Cocco and Aleida Bertran

-running parallels between pilgrimage and fieldwork as transformative experiences for both the pilgrim and the researcher ( Helms 1988 ; Turner and Turner 1978 ). In this article we explore how the 2020 Festival of Sant'Efisio was moved from the streets to the

Open access

Staying Tuned

Connections beyond ‘the Field’

Geoffrey Hughes and Anna-Maria Walter

introduction of Internet-enabled electronic devices. 1 The generational shift that we are witnessing—before and after social media connectivity—has in turn profoundly transformed the experience of initiatory long-term fieldwork for the current cohort of

Open access

Traversing Fields

Affective Continuities across Muslim and Christian Settings in Berlin

Omar Kasmani and Dominik Mattes

settings in the same city? Or how, for that matter, through such joint labors, might we establish shared affective terrains and relations that would otherwise be implausible? With such questions at hand, we reflect on carrying out collaborative fieldwork

Open access

Fieldwork through the Zoomiverse

Sensing Uganda in a Time of Immobility

Richard Vokes and Gertrude Atukunda

’ many fieldwork visits to Uganda and, to a lesser extent, through Atukunda's research trips to Vokes’ home universities in (variously) the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Australia. However, over time, the research engagement has also become

Open access

Fieldwork at sunset

Visual representations of anthropology online

Bryonny Goodwin-Hawkins and Hannah Gould

methodology ( Morphy and Banks 1997 ), the camera remains an essential fieldwork tool, and “the field,” broadly conceived, is the substance of most photographs in our data set. “Seared with reality” ( Benjamin 1999: 512 ), field photographs evidence what

Open access

Barak Kalir

Methodological accounts often deliberately omit the role that luck plays in getting access to challenging research sites. Indeed, it sounds unprofessional and feels unsatisfying to attribute luck to our work. ‘I hope to get lucky’ will not go down well with most supervisors or as part of any grant proposal. We should, however, consider that luck literally stands for the probability that certain events might take place under certain circumstances. Reflecting on our luck can therefore help us to expound important features that structure the probability of getting access. In my case, getting access to the Spanish state deportation regime could never be anticipated or secured simply in line with the importance of my project or my academic credentials. Obtaining formal approval from the Spanish authorities proved to be impossible, but I eventually achieved access in a messy way that involved many informal interactions and much uncertainty. Accounting for my months‐long attempts, I show how luck sensitised me to officials’ ample discretionary power and pervasive sense of impunity in producing an image of ‘the state’ as unpredictable and opaque. This image induced the strong sensation that my fieldwork crucially depended on the whims of particular officials.