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Harassed

Gender, Bodies, and Ethnographic Research

Rebecca Hanson, Patricia Richards

Paperback

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Other Editions of This Title:
Hardcover (5/29/2019)

Description

Researchers frequently experience sexualized interactions, sexual objectification, and harassment as they conduct fieldwork. These experiences are often left out of ethnographers’ “tales from the field” and remain unaddressed within qualitative literature. Harassed argues that the androcentric, racist, and colonialist epistemological foundations of ethnographic methodology contribute to the silence surrounding sexual harassment and other forms of violence. Rebecca Hanson and Patricia Richards challenge readers to recognize how these attitudes put researchers at risk, further the solitude experienced by researchers, lead others to question the validity of their work, and, in turn, negatively impact the construction of ethnographic knowledge. To improve methodological training, data collection, and knowledge produced by all researchers, Harassed advocates for an embodied approach to ethnography that reflexively engages with the ways in which researchers’ bodies shape the knowledge they produce. By challenging these assumptions, the authors offer an opportunity for researchers, advisors, and educators to consider the multiple ways in which good ethnographic research can be conducted. Beyond challenging current methodological training and mentorship, Harassed opens discussions about sexual harassment and violence in the social sciences in general.

 


Praise For Harassed: Gender, Bodies, and Ethnographic Research

"Harassed is an important, insightful text that should become a staple for research methods classes in anthropology, sociology, and women’s and gender studies. . . . This is a must-read for anyone conducting or supervising ethnographic research. . . . Highly recommended."
— CHOICE

"One of this book’s major contributions is to lay bare the gendered character of ethnography as practical endeavor and intellectual pursuit. Interview extracts vividly convey how prevailing conventions create pernicious traps and impossible binds for female researchers, for whom the very act of entering a field site alone and unknown frequently contravenes prescribed norms of feminine conduct and so renders them vulnerable to overtures and advances. . . . While positioned as a challenge to institutional silence, Harassed could instead be seen as throwing down the gauntlet, providing a comprehensive appraisal of the problem and setting out clear-headed proposals for change."
— Times Higher Education

"One of this book’s major contributions is to lay bare the gendered character of ethnography as practical endeavor and intellectual pursuit. Interview extracts vividly convey how prevailing conventions create pernicious traps and impossible binds for female researchers, for whom the very act of entering a field site alone and unknown frequently contravenes prescribed norms of feminine conduct and so renders them vulnerable to overtures and advances. . . . While positioned as a challenge to institutional silence, Harassed could instead be seen as throwing down the gauntlet, providing a comprehensive appraisal of the problem and setting out clear-headed proposals for change."
— Times Higher Education

"Harassed should be required reading for any class on ethnography or in-depth interviewing, for any researcher conducting ethnography or interviews, and for any faculty member who is advising students conducting such work. Armed with this book, researchers will not only be better able to protect themselves but they will also gain a model for how to learn and teach from their own embodied experiences in the field."
— Gender & Society

"When my friends and I faced gendered issues during fieldwork, we viewed it as an anomalous problem to manage as best we could. Hanson and Richards move beyond individual-level suggestions on how to handle risks; they challenge academic assumptions about the very nature of ethnography. Their vision of an embodied ethnography should inform ongoing conversations about how we produce knowledge as well as how to appropriately train and support our students and colleagues."


— Social Forces

"Harassed should be required reading for any class on ethnography or in-depth interviewing, for any researcher conducting ethnography or interviews, and for any faculty member who is advising students conducting such work. Armed with this book, researchers will not only be better able to protect themselves but they will also gain a model for how to learn and teach from their own embodied experiences in the field."


— Gender & Society

University of California Press, 9780520299047, 240pp.

Publication Date: May 29, 2019



About the Author

Rebecca Hanson is Assistant Professor in the Center of Latin American Studies and the Department of Sociology and Criminology & Law at the University of Florida. 


Patricia Richards is Professor of Sociology and Women’s Studies at the University of Georgia. She is the author of Pobladoras, Indígenas, and the State: Conflicts over Women’s Rights in Chile and Race and the Chilean Miracle: Neoliberalism, Democracy, and Indigenous Rights.