Ethnography is not too bias because it can be argued that objectivity (that by
which ethnography is critized for not being) does not represent the real world. Anna
Haraway explored how sciences that are completely objective also resemble disembodied
objects, which is unrepresentative of people because we are all embodied individuals. As
we are all situated within our own embodiment, anthropology is reliable because rather
than searching for universality (like many of other sciences) it seeks to understand things
in the particular context in which it resides. While sciences seek to display relativism,
that is to be everywhere and no where at the same time and to condense all knowledge
about the world into one universal language, anthropology seeks to display their
embodiment in their work and contextualize their knowledge. Thus Haraway displays
that subjectivity is not being too bias but rather being the embodied individuals that are
the best representation of the real world.
Michael Asch also displays how anthropology is not too bias to tell us anything
important about the world. Through Asch’s work on indignity and the state, he seeks to
explain why he chose his place to stand and support within the conflict between them.
He displays how he decided to take the side of the First Nations but by no means does
that mean he would support First Nations in all other realms. He chose to support the
First Nations because by supporting their approach (Treaty) he believed that was the best
route to justice. Moreover, Asch displays that he was not simply bias in his workd and
positioning throughout his anthropology, but rather made an educated decision that suited
the particular context in which he was situated.
Therefore, etnography is not too bias but rather displays a particular situated or
conflict through an embodied lens which is much more reliable than a disembodied one.
4) auto ethnography is the self reflection of an anthropologists ethnographic experience
and focuses on their subjective experience rather than the interactions with the beliefs and
practices of others. Auto ethnography is used as a critical analyses of ones own
ethnographic fieldwork and can help display the struggles that were met and the
challenges that were overcome. An example of how autoethnographies display the
complexities overcome during their anthropological quest is Syivan’s work looking at the
Jo/’haousi. She used her autoethnography to display ethical concerns in her own work as
she was working with a highly segregated and marginalized group of people. At first she
couldn’t even talk to them because of the Afrikanza workers and their racist views toward
the Jo/hausi. She displays how after months of gaining the Jo/hosies trust and sneeking
around behind the Afrikanza farmers she was finally able to immerse in her fieldwork.
But this in itself, she stated, was a huge ethical concerns as who she should be
accountable and trustworthy too? If she had told the Afrikanza what she was originally
there to do they would have sent her packing. During her fieldwork, she wold sneak
some Jo;hosies into the back of her car so they could get medicines in the village, if
caught she would hardly be punished due ot her hite skin, but know that would not be the
case for the jo/;housie who would have been beaten or worse. This critical analyses of
her own ethical concerns displays that it’s not always black and white when looking at
who an ethnographer should stay loyal too. 5) ethnography and novels do have a similarity, which is its voice. Although some
ethnographic work does differ from most novels, such as heatherington’s work in Italy, as
they write in a very academic speech which is sometimes difficult to follow along. Most
ethnography, however, is written very clearly and easy to follow. This is like most novels
as they too have a reader friendly vocabulary. This is seen in Dunn’s and Kenny’s work.
Both anthropologists write in such a way that is engaging yet simplistic enough to not
have to reread to understand. This clear language is one way that ethnography and novels
Also, they are both similar in their ability to make the reader relate to the
characters. As ethnography relys on fieldwork, the immersion of a culture in which long
term integration with the local people is essential, the reader is able to grasp and
understand the people the ethnographer discusses. Whether that be on a personal level or
just understanding where they are coming from in their points of views, this is a direct
reflection of how people connect with novels as well. Whether the novel be fiction or non
fiction, the reader is able to connect to, sympathise for or just understand the characters
point of view better than they did at the beginning of the book. Moreover, ethnography
allows somebody to go from knowing nothing about the topic to understanding or
connecting to the people being understood.
Ethnography is very different than novels in their process. Whether a novel is fiction or
non fiction it does not go through nerely as much ethical processes as ethnography does.
As discussed in class, and in the autoethnography written by Gotlib (Doctors with
Borders), the amount of ethical boards and presentations and consent forms that need to
be processed and created in order to go through with ethnographic work is immense.
Gotlib spent months and months writing papers speeches and powerpoints to ethical
boards and governments to proceed with her ethnographic work in transgendered clinics.
Ethnographic policies and processes take a significantly longer time than novels do, as
most of their process comes from the writing not the approvals. Also in regards to
policies who the writer is accountable to is also a huge difference between ethnography
and novels. Gibb’s article in autoethnographies displays how she was unable to write
about her relationship during her ethnography due to ethical purposes, however, if she
had it would have strengthened how she came to her conclusions and results. As
novelists main obligations are to their publisher, as long as it makes a good story there
aren’t as many proceedurs that need to be taken.
Therefore, there are resembalnces between novels and ethnography such as the writing
style and connection to characters while there is also ways they differ. The two types of
writing differ in their ethical processes and the question of who they’re obligations are
too during the writing process.
6. The film City of God displayed a much better representation of the relationship
between criminality and poverty than did Hidden heads of household. City of Gods
shows how great of lengths many people will go to in order to escape ghettos and a life of
poverty. For example, the film perpetuated the idea that most teenage/young adul