Literary Ethnography

A blog about writing, creating, and representing culture

More grammar humor.

More grammar humor.

“I am dead to adverbs; they cannot excite me. To misplace an adverb is a thing which I am able to do with frozen indifference; it can never give me a pang.”

—   Mark Twain

WOMEN'S RIGHTS IN THE COLD WAR

My feature article on Elena Lagadinova, the youngest female partisan fighting against the Nazis in World War II.

“Beauty is a manifestation of secret natural laws, which otherwise would have been hidden from us forever.”

—   Johanne Wolfgang van Goethe

My vintage German Triumph-Adler typewriter.  Notice the keys with umlauts!

thenewrepublic:

George Orwell’s Brilliant Guide to Writing Well
The best writing advice you’ll ever read. Period. 

A useful tool for ethnographers, too.

thenewrepublic:

George Orwell’s Brilliant Guide to Writing Well

The best writing advice you’ll ever read. Period. 

A useful tool for ethnographers, too.

“I would plead — and plead on behalf of every author of every book — that a writer should be able to write a particular book, as opposed to every possible book on the subject.”

—   

Susan Faludi, author of Backlash, responding on Friday to the big summer re-read of her 1991 book:  https://medium.com/matter/the-summer-of-backlash-f2c63df0c5b0

Amen to Susan!

tastefullyoffensive:

[scotthilburn]

I am always a sucker for this kind of humor.

tastefullyoffensive:

[scotthilburn]

I am always a sucker for this kind of humor.

(via sherlockhiddlestonwho)

Anonymous said: I am a UK-based anthropologist too and I like to read about 'writing' too. Your fantastic selection of quotes in the last weeks all revolve around writing and how it better is precise and clear writing. Are you doing a project on 'how to achieve good (ethnographic) writing'? Do you read books on 'how to write'? Or do you find these quotes via searches around the web? Best wishes

Yes, I am doing a project on ethnographic writing.  I have a deadline for a book manuscript on how to write ethnography due on December 1st.  I am also going to be writing a series of guest posts on the Savage Minds anthropology blog in January.  At least half of these posts will discuss writing and provide writing advice.

I rarely search around the Internet for quotes.  I come by them the old fashioned way.  Right now, I am on a binge read of books about writing.  I’ve read about 42 books so far, in all genres.  When I come across a quote I like, I type it into a notes file that I am keeping for the book manuscript.  When I want to post something on Tumblr, I have a rich file of notes and quotes to select from.  

“Simplify your language and thereby find your humanity.”

—   William Zinsser