Unlike survey research and most other quantifying methodological approaches in sociology, the procedures followed in field work projects cannot be neatly predetermined; they cannot be taught, therefore, according to set rules and standard operations. Field work is a craft and can only be fully comprehended in its practice. As a practice, in turn, field work illuminates general methodological, theoretical, and political problems inherent in sociology. In this course, students are asked to choose either one or several field sites and interview partners, to be negotiated jointly with the instructor. They will report regularly on the progress of their work, be taught how to take and how to analyse fieldnotes and interviews, and eventually, how to construct and prepare a draft of a final research paper. Please note that this is a reading intensive course. If you are planning to read one book per two weeks, this course will be suitable for you.
Becker, Howard S. 1998. Tricks of the Trade: How to Think About Your Research While You're Doing It. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
Buroway, Michael (2000) Global Ethnography: Forces, Connections, and Imaginations in a Postmodern World.