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Insider Perspective / Verbal Portrait

This essay calls upon you to make extensive use of the ethnographer’s research tools (interview, observations, fieldnotes) to offer an insider’s perspective of the people, places, and/or communities of practice that have been the focus of your study. For this assignment, your focus should be on one or more of the following: ● an interview with a key participant (at least one hour); ● field observations of a community of practice (at least two visits on two different days); ● cultural artifact (at least two different artifacts revealing different facets of the community) To generate this essay, you should rely on your Expanded Fieldnotes and Conceptual Memos, as described earlier in this chapter. Ideally, this essay can serve as an introduction to your final ethnographic essay, just as it has in the examples from Eric Pleasant’s and Carmen Kynard’s essays provided in this chapter. Writing from an “Insider’s Perspective” requires selective perception, which should involve choices based on the overall sense you hope to communicate: What insights have you gained from your field observations, Expanded FNs, and Conceptual Memos? How might this description of place, people, communities of practice, literacy events, and/or literacy artifacts help set the stage for an essay in which you reveal these insights--ideally in response to the research question driving your ethnography? Consider, for example, Carmen Kynard’s description of a classroom at a college in the Bronx. How did she describe her students? Her administrators? How did Eric Pleasant’ go about describing the club in Austin, Texas, in the 1980s, where he developed aspects of what he calls his “punk literacy”? How did these descriptions contribute to each researcher’s key arguments? insights derived from their field observations? Your description involves more than making an inventory or listing details. It also involves making deliberate choices, ● focusing on some elements of the landscape or people and ignoring others; ● narrowing your gaze to a specific place, cultural artifact, or personal detail and rejecting others as you do so; ● utilizing particular metaphors and descriptions and abandoning others as inappropriate; Throughout, your descriptions should be based on evidence found in your fieldnotes. Even so, your “Insider’s Perspective” can be an amalgamation of different field observations, for example, rather than a single one alone. Pleasant's description, for example, was based on memories of a club he visited with friends on a few different occasions, all of which occurred more than twenty years before he wrote his ethnography. Details emerged from his own reflections of this time combined with interviews he conducted with the friends with whom he conducted this “punk literacy” so long ago, evidence of which he found not in one single set of fieldnotes but across multiple field observations, reflections, and Conceptual Memos.
This essay calls upon you to make extensive use of the ethnographer’s research tools (interview, observations, fieldnotes) to offer an insider’s perspective of the people, places, and/or communities of practice that have been the focus of your study.
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Assignment ID
313162
Type
CREATED ON
9 November 2017
COMPLETED ON
10 November 2017
Price
$30
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