21A.112 Seminar in Ethnography and Fieldwork

Fall 2003

Draft of a page from Margaret Mead's Growing Up in New Guinea.
"The Ethnographic Points of Manus Culture," draft of page from Appendix 2 of Growing Up in New Guinea, ca. 1929-30. Holograph manuscript. Margaret Mead. (Image courtesy of the Library of Congress.)

Course Highlights

An extensive bibliography of readings and downloadable study materials are available for this course.

Course Description

This course involves reading about how to do fieldwork, practicing fieldwork, reading ethnographies and about ethnography, and practicing writing ethnography. We will move from an overview of ethnography, to getting into the field, to writing fieldnotes, to analyzing data and writing a short ethnographic piece.

We will, as you must in doing fieldwork and writing ethnographies, intersperse reading with fieldwork to theoretically inform both the fieldwork and the writing. The ethics of fieldwork and obligations to research subjects are discussed throughout the semester. 

Donate Now


Prof. Susan Silbey

Course Meeting Times

One session / week
3 hours / session