Tag: participant-observation

Ramadan as an anthropologist

standplaatswereld , September 13th, 2022

By Lilian Ebbelaar Ramadan to me was always something that was so interesting. It had this kind of mysterious feeling and always felt strange to me. Why are…

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Fieldwork story Stammler 1: Yamal, participation over observation is a health risk

fstammle , April 24th, 2020

participation over observation is a health riskThis was my first cold night ever in a chum in the Yamal tundra. It’s a story of ‘lesson learned’ early on…

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#Fieldwork among comedians: A Danish anthropologist trying to be funny

Morten Nielsen , April 13th, 2017

“Why are stand-up comedians better anthropologists than I am?” A few years ago, I started asking myself that question. As an anthropologist, I am supposed to know about…


Trace ethnography: a retrospective

staeiou , March 23rd, 2016

Stuart Geiger @staeiou continues our edition of ‘The Person in the (Big) Data‘ with a reflection on his practice of ‘trace ethnography’ that focuses on the trace-makin…

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Why abstinence-only drug education doesn’t work—in fact, it backfires spectacularly.

Hilary Agro , March 21st, 2016

I talked to a lot of middle-class recreational drug users for my research. None of them had any idea when they were younger that they’d end up dropping…

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The intangible narcotic: What does ‘vibe’ mean, really?

Hilary Agro , March 9th, 2016

There’s a term that comes up pretty frequently when talking about electronic music events. A search within my interviews (excepts from which are quoted here) and field notes…

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For anthropologists, is interdisciplinarity ever truly a meeting of equals?

The Anxious Anthropologist , February 20th, 2016

I recently read a Twitter post which asserted that interdisciplinarity was never a meeting of equals. As an anthropologist working outside of an academic department I met this…

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Feelings into words: Harvest Festival Part 2

Hilary Agro , February 10th, 2016

Describing, in words, what it’s like to be at a rave is one of the most difficult things I’ve had to do for my research. How can one…

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The jacket

The Anxious Anthropologist , January 20th, 2016

I’m trying a new strategy at work to raise my oomph and improve my legit appeal. I’m no slouch when it comes to sparring about ideas, concepts and…

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Surviving the Holidays, Anthropologist Style

Carie Little Hersh , December 19th, 2015

As the holidays inch closer, and you’re beginning to dread joining the bag of mixed nuts you call your family, consider approaching them with anthropologists’ eyes this year….

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How does an Anthropologist add value in the workplace?

The Anxious Anthropologist , December 15th, 2015

                At work I’m not employed as an anthropologist. Not directly anyway; my skills in research and higher education certainly helped…

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The Anthropologist’s Disclaimer

sydneyyeager , September 23rd, 2015

Many people I meet, even people I talk to on a regular basis, do not have background knowledge of anthropology, and I think that is fairly typical. Anthropology…

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What Anthropologists Do

sydneyyeager , September 21st, 2015

The strength of anthropology is that we are always learning, gathering data isn’t something we do in a lab or even something we can easily shut off. We…

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“Drugs are bad,” he said, sipping his beer: Legality vs. social acceptability

Hilary Agro , August 12th, 2015

I’ve found it highly interesting to hear drug users trash talk other drugs, even while they’re high on their own preferred substance. Gina* thinks that alcohol is the…

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A state of trance: Inner peace rising from chaos

Hilary Agro , July 14th, 2015

The experience of getting inside Sound Academy for Armin van Buuren was the low point of the night. After an evening of rain and dancing at the electronic…

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A happy ending for 30,000 mollyed-out kids running around Toronto.

Hilary Agro , July 9th, 2015

My heart dropped into my stomach when I first saw the announcement. Fireworks and junk during Zedd’s finale. “You’re welcome for this 3-second photo op,” thought the cleanup…

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Psytrance, a world unto itself

Hilary Agro , July 1st, 2015

Most of what I knew about psytrance (psychedelic trance) raves before I actually went to one came from this article in Vice: Psytrance really is a counter-culture in…

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Field Notes: This data collection is interfering with my dancing.

Hilary Agro , June 18th, 2015

The following is a selection of some of the more entertaining notes from my first official field research night. (The last post was a preliminary getting-a-feel-for-things outing.) I…

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Eat, sleep, anth, repeat: It begins

Hilary Agro , June 15th, 2015

Sunglasses in the darkness. White shorts, no shirt. Perspiration shining on his skin in the wild, flashing lights. A familiar-looking backpack on his shoulders, strapped over his muscular…

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