This craft-based workshop supports advanced undergraduate and graduate students to develop ethnographic research within creative formats alternative to the predominant practice of analytic, propositional prose. It provides a collaborative environment for students to explore the relationship between ethnographic content and form, or put another way, the relationship between cultural aesthetics/poetics and ethnographic representation. As a GWSS offering, the studio centers critical feminist praxis in terms of research ethics, audience, knowledge production, and social justice.
For undergraduates, this studio course guides students in creating a capstone project, different from but possibly complementary to an honors or senior portfolio. For graduate students, it provides a way to practice or prototype modes of ethnographic inquiry and representation they want to incorporate or develop further through dissertation research.
Prerequisites & Process
In order to participate, students must have a well-defined project based on some previous ethnographic research and a preliminary proposal for the medium in which they intend to work, such as creative non-fiction, fiction, poetry, photography, performance, video, audio, or some combination thereof. Previous research can include interviews, oral history, auto-ethnography, participant observation, etc. The focus of the workshop will be on sharing resources and models; iteratively producing and revising well-defined projects that can be completed within ten weeks; and providing constructive feedback to fellow participants.
In order to maintain a workshop environment, the course is limited to 15 students. Registration is by add code from instructor only. In order to apply, please submit a project proposal to firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications (500 words or less) should describe the ethnographic research already completed or underway and a proposal for how you want to develop this material, including the medium you will use and a rationale for why you have chosen it.
For more about the history of the course, see “Ethnography Unbound: Experiments in New Scholarship.”
The following books are required and have been ordered for purchase through the University Book Store. They have also been requested for course reserves through the Odegaard Undergraduate Library, with a 2-hour loan period. Other required readings will be uploaded to a folder in the Canvas Files for this course.
- Sherine Hamdy, Coleman Nye, Sarula Bao, Caroline Brewer, and Marc Parenteau, Lissa: A Story about Medical Promise, Friendship, and Revolution, North York, Ontario: University of Toronto Press, 2017.
- Patricia Leavy, Method Meets Art: Arts-Based Research Practice (2nd edition), New York: The Guilford Press, 2015.
The following suggested books have also been requested through course reserves as resources for you to consult as you develop your projects.
- Andrew Causey, Drawn to See: Drawing as an Ethnographic Method, North York, Ontario: University of Toronto Press, 2017.
- D. Soyini Madison, Critical Ethnography: Method, Ethics, and Performance, Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage, 2005. (The second, updated edition, published in 2012, also been ordered and will be placed on reserve when it arrives at the library.)
- Kirin Narayan, Alive in the Writing: Crafting Ethnography in the Company of Chekhov, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2012.
- Anand Pandian and Stuart McLean, eds., Crumpled Paper Boat: Experiments in Ethnographic Writing, Durham: Duke University Press, 2017.
The UC Collaboratory for Ethnography and Design (CoLED)
Keywords for Ethnography and Design, Cultural Anthropology
Ethnocharrette: as developed by the Center for Ethnography at the University of California, Irvine