Deconstructing the definition of ethnography.
So now that the grades are in, I do hope that I can start tumbling again. More posts coming soon…
After four months of peer review at a top journal in my field, I was happy to get a revise and resubmit, with great feedback from the anonymous reviewers. Their suggestions improved the article, and I was thrilled when I was able to turn around the revisions in 6 weeks.
I have now been informed that it might take another 4 months before I have a decision on the manuscript. If it is accepted, I fear a one or two year back-log of articles which means my piece might not appear until three years after it was written.
So I’ve been thinking a lot lately about academic self-publishing. Why should my scholarship, which I hope will contribute to the greater common good, be holed up and sequestered for so long before people can read it? Am I only interested in publishing in this venue for my own academic advancement?
I found this blog post and am really intrigued by the idea of “guerrilla self-publishing.” Somehow, this way of disseminating knowledge feels more democratic and less self-serving.
Has anyone else had thoughts about academic self-publishing? Any advice?
The essential vocation of interpretive anthropology is not to answer our deepest questions, but to make available to us answers that others have given and thus to include them in the consultable record of what man has said.
Clifford Geertz (via onehrtomadness)
Anthropology will continue to get a bad rap as long as we anthropologists think and write about the human condition in obtuse ways. When I talk about my life in anthropology and the people I have come to know and love over the years, I find people in the audience moved—not because what I had to say was particularly brilliant, but because I opened my experience—my joy and pain and that of my Nigerian friends—to them and such an opening established a connection. At my last several talks, I seen people shed a tear to two when I talk about the depth of my ethnographic experience and the depth of the humanity of my Nigerian friends. That kind of connect is usually missing in anthropological accounts. In my view of things, this connect should be the centerpiece of what we do.
Paul Stoller, this year’s recipient of the Anders Retzius gold medal (for a significant contribution to the field of anthropology)
A little humor for all of you out there who have written or are writing a dissertation.
[E]thnographic writing [emerges] from a process of observation of the minutiae of everyday life, of ceremonies and rituals, of economic exchange, of child rearing, of eating, of literally anything we can imagine that concerns what people do or say, consume of produce.
Tobias Hecht, from After Life: An Ethnographic Novel, page 8
Each of us embarks on a journey outward into the world and inward into the self. We are, as Durkheim said, at once collective and individual. Society is mysterious to us because we have lived in it and it now dwells inside us at a level that is not ordinarily visible from the perspective of everyday life. Writing is one way we try to bring the two into some mutual understanding that we can share with others.
Keith Hart (anthropologist) from “Studying world society as a vocation” (http://thememorybank.co.uk/papers/studying-world-society/)
Recently finished a draft of a new book manuscript, but I have no time to attend to it until the end of the semester.
What to do?
Put it in a manuscript incubator watched over by a faithful basset hound until late May…