EFieldnotes: The Makings of Anthropology in the Digital World

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Roger Sanjek, Susan W. Tratner
University of Pennsylvania Press, Aug 26, 2015 - Social Science - 296 pages
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In this volume, sixteen distinguished scholars address the impact of digital technologies on how anthropologists do fieldwork and on what they study. With nearly three billion Internet users and more than four and a half billion mobile phone owners today, and with an ever-growing array of electronic devices and information sources, ethnographers confront a vastly different world from just decades ago, when fieldnotes produced by hand and typewriter were the professional norm.

Reflecting on fieldwork experiences both off- and online, the contributors survey changes and continuities since the classic volume Fieldnotes: The Makings of Anthropology, edited by Roger Sanjek, was published in 1990. They also confront ethical issues in online fieldwork, the strictures of institutional review boards affecting contemporary research, new forms of digital data and mediated collaboration, shifting boundaries between home and field, and practical and moral aspects of fieldnote recording, curating, sharing, and archiving.

The essays draw upon fieldwork in locales ranging from Japan, Liberia, Germany, India, Jamaica, Zambia, to Iraqi Kurdistan, and with diaspora groups of Brazilians in Belgium and Indonesians of Hadhrami Arab descent. In the United States, fieldwork populations include urban mothers of toddlers and young children, teen tech users, Bitcoin traders, World of Warcraft gamers, online texters and bloggers, and anthropologists themselves.

With growing interest in both traditional and digital ethnographic methods, scholars and students in anthropology and sociology, as well as in computer and information sciences, linguistics, social work, communications, media studies, design, management, and policy fields, will find much of value in this engaging and accessibly written volume.

Contributors: Jenna Burrell, Lisa Cliggett, Heather A. Horst, Jean E. Jackson, Graham M. Jones, William W. Kelly, Diane E. King, Jordan Kraemer, Rena Lederman, Mary H. Moran, Bonnie A. Nardi, Roger Sanjek, Bambi B. Schieffelin, Mieke Schrooten, Martin Slama, Susan W. Tratner.

 

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Contents

Changes in Fieldnotes Practice over the Past Thirty Years
42
Local and Global
65
Some Ethical Considerations
78
From Genealogical Records
94
DIGITALLY MEDIATED FIELDWORK AND COLLEGIALITY
111
On Remote Collaborative
132
Collaboration Digital Media
153
eFieldnotes
171
The Ethnography of Inscriptive Speech
210
Preservation Sharing and Technological Challenges
231
Archiving Fieldnotes? Placing Anthropological Records Among
251
Fieldnotes and Queries for Anthropology
272
List of Contributors
289
Copyright

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About the author (2015)

Roger Sanjek taught anthropology at Queens College, CUNY, from 1972 to 2009. He is the editor of Fieldnotes: The Makings of Anthropology. Susan W. Tratner is Associate Professor at SUNY Empire State College.

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