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Durham University

Department of Geography

Departmental Research Projects

Publication details

coverCrang, M. & Cook, I. Doing Ethnographies. London.: Sage; 2007.

Author(s) from Durham


"Doing Ethnographies" is an introductory and applied guide to ethnographic methods. It focuses on those methods - participant observation, interviewing, focus groups, and video photographic work - that allow us to understand the lived, everyday world 'out there'. In five chapters it presents a systematic overview of: first principles - the role of the 'detached researcher', the idea of a 'pure culture'; preparing for fieldwork - initiating access, the relation of knowledge to ethics; constructing ethnographic information - participant observation, interviewing, focus groups, filmic approaches; analyzing field materials - sifting, sorting, and making sense, relating analysis to fieldwork and to theory; and writing - why writing matters, dialogic accounts, narrating research. "Doing Ethnographies" is a guide to the issues and methods which have to be considered when doing an ethnography. Informed by the authors' fieldwork experience, it demonstrates how methods work in the field, so preparing the first-time ethnographer for the loss of control and direction often experienced. It is a guide to methods in the field, to the relation between theory, practice, and writing.

Department of Geography