The anthropology of yore is gone— whereby researchers would go to the island to observe “the natives” and upon returning to the “real world,” share all that was learned of the other while in “the field.” With the advents of technology and the increasingly globalized world, there are no more islands left untouched — and so the necessity for and the rules of — ethnography have changed. And I think it’s a good thing.
While most modern anthropologists agree that their predecessors’ approaches and methodologies were not without their faults, they must acknowledge their contributions along with the controversies. The contemporary anthropologist, however, is not without adversity or critique. Along with the introduction of advanced technologies and new forms of communication comes the potential for infinite possibilities for shaping research and everyday lives. This is the discourse with which I dance.
The blog is an interactive form of communication/ social media in publicly accessible format. It is what I am incorporating into my methodology. The fact that the “informants/participants” are able to consciously and intentionally contribute to the blog opens an entire new set of questions; questions I still do not have the answers to, because like my predecessors, Malinowski and Geertz, I am figuring out the perimeters. Continue reading