Ethnomethodology and Ethnography - SAGE Research Methods
Various traces can be found within the history of ethnography and qualitative socio-culturally generated in relation to circumstance, but is not merely relative. .. relying on field notes or coding procedures, 3) idealized or invented examples . In this chapter, I outline the key tenets of institutional ethnography (IE) as a in IE to be mediated by texts, which might be paper-based, screen-based, words, . And within IE, the relationship between the researcher who is facilitating the . IE and ANT set themselves apart from a broader ethnomethodological tradition. Varieties of a third strategy, ethnography, including the ethnography of specific . Ethnomethodology's relationship with its "mother discipline" . In their collaborative essay, Harold GARFINKEL and Harvey SACKS ().
Based on extended field work in the Italian slums of Boston, WHYTE portrays the culture and social structure of the informal social structure of "street corner society" in the late 's. TEN HAVE uses verbatim passages from WHYTE to raise issues of interconnectedness among the subjective experiences of the researcher, observations documented field notes of interactions within the field setting by members of the subculture as well as with outside agents, such as the policeand analytical preferences.
Essays on the social situation of mental patients and inmates GOFFMAN demonstrates how institutional ethnographies pose a dual description: The "down to earth" accounts of how these procedures and policies are experienced in everyday life are uncomplimentary to the dominant perspective of the "official record" of the social institution. HAVE notes, as GOFFMAN did in "Asylums," that the mere fact of researchers being present and making observations has a latent function of disrupting the daily routines and patterns of staff and inmates that alters what is being observed and described in the ethnography.
It is the commentary and analysis of this latent function that makes it possible for the ethnography to be analyzed from an ethnomethodological perspective. The ethnomethodological analysis of the relationship between social institutional patterns of handling the course of dying among the ill in a hospital setting is reflective of how the emotional aspects of relating to the dying patient are handled through the formality and social distance of professionals.
STRAUSS was a student at the University of Chicago and was heavily influenced by the symbolic interactionist theory that played a significant role in the development of the qualitative research traditions of today. In their book The discovery of grounded theory: I am not convinced that grounded theory has actually abandoned the tradition of generating explanation from the data, as TEN HAVE contends, but I do see ethnomethodology at one end of the continuum of qualitative approaches and grounded theory at the other end.
I am not certain that grounded theorists would disagree with the idea of a confrontation, at least in the form of the production of categorical evidence claims that can be either refuted or verified.
What I think TEN HAVE may not be taking into account in his critique is that grounded theory uses the "deviant case" to explain exceptions and move to higher levels of abstraction in the naming of categories that are inclusive of the full description and explanation offered in their propositions and descriptive narrative accounts.
He presents a series of observational assignments he has used with his students in sociology classes to teach fundamentals of observation and demonstrate how ordinary social situations can become the foci of inquiry. He notes that the use of "bracketing" serves as a technique for illustrating the foci of what is studied, with attention to what is observed, that is distinguishable from what is already known about the phenomena observed.
TEN HAVE emphasizes that in ethnomethodological analysis the researcher attempts to discover the specifics of how social actions take place contextually. He contends ethnomethodology moves to specificity by consciously noting the procedural aspects and steps in observation and observer reaction to the observed. He notes that ethnomethodological indifference tends to be perceived as critical of established conventions of doing social research both quantitative and qualitative.
Two primary approaches to qualitative methodology ethnography and grounded theory are identified and contrasted to ethnomethodology. Context for Application TEN HAVE's background as a qualitative researcher and sociology professor at the University of Amsterdam provides a wealth of expertise to understand qualitative research methods.
The key contribution of ethnomethodology is to raise difficult questions that challenge the assumptions of methods and procedures used in a variety of qualitative and, to some degree, quantitative methods of inquiry. The text would have been of greater value to my teaching if it had laid out a programmatic tutorial for learning how to think from an ethnomethodological perspective.
The summaries of major points at the end of each chapter provide a good review of the major ideas presented in the chapters. The recommended readings at the end of each chapter are a good source for easily reading elaborations and the comparisons of ideas more briefly presented in the TEN HAVE text.What is INSTITUTIONAL ETHNOGRAPHY? What does INSTITUTIONAL ETHNOGRAPHY mean?
Extensions and Further Applications As I read the book I thought of several applications of ethnomethodology that could be made in my own work as a marriage and family therapist. Nevertheless, the application of documents and pictures that I use in the therapy process has a key aspect in common with ethnomethodological studies, that of focusing on procedural aspects of the shared "situated practices" that illustrate patterns of everyday life through the generations.
Harvey Sacks Lectures on Conversation. Volumes 1 and 2. This leads me to my second reference. An impossible one to read quickly — but in its odd pages you would find much of interest. Harvey Sacks published little in his life but lectured extensively, and it was in his lectures where he worked out much of his argument and analysis — the transcripts of his lectures are surprisingly readable and full of insight and observations that span a vast range of social phenomena.
Harvey Sacks — Lectures Solving the problem of paradox by switching instead to its uses. Two final more contemporary pieces. A quite absurd and wonderful book, it takes it start on how you could study our ordinary reasoning through setting a range of puzzles and exercises to do.
University Of Chicago Press. We finalized these plans about a week ago. Thank you for your support. Your prayers will make a difference. Following the surgery, the father posted the following update: Thank God, and thank you for your support, and especially for your prayers. We have made many friends as result of the ANA. I thank you again for your support and prayers.
Ethnomethodology and the study of online communities: exploring the cyber streets
I close with two thoughts. You will be more appreciative for what you have, more empathetic to others, and put more value on how much the support of others means. You will never be the same. You will be much, much better for having had this experience. In this message, he talks about his wife, his daughter, a grandmother, and some personal thoughts as the family prepares for the surgery. The tone of the posting is much like a family letter--its assumes that readers sense a certain degree of intimacy and a willingness to share very personal information.
We were supposed to go in September, but due to scheduling problems at the Drs. So, now the time is counting down and we are starting to realize the implications of what may happen.
Ethnomethodology and the study of online communities
We have read so many e-mails of how people go back to work in a couple of weeks and are very encouraged by that. We also read the e-mails of all the possible complications and that is what makes us nervous.
Just a reminder, my wife has a 2 cm AN. We are in the final stages of weaning our daughter who turns one year old on Friday. She started walking last week and we are real excited about that. She is growing in so many ways. It really is amazing.
I was talking to a co-worker who is in a wheel chair and she was telling me about how many people tell her how lucky she is to be able to sit down all day. Even though they are joking, and she has a good sense of humor about it, comments like that still hurt. Grandma is coming in a couple days to help take care of us. She is coming early mainly so that out daughter gets used to having her around before mom and dad take a week to go through the surgery and recovery.
With mom in the hospital and dad driving back and forth, we figure it will be hard on her for while. Depending on the after effects and recovery time, grandma is going to be here for a while. The other grandma is willing to come out after so we are covered for a couple of months if need be.
Well, keep us in your prayers and I will try to keep you posted as to how things go. Take care and God bless. In addition, because the exchanges that take place online may lack the assumed level of intimacy and self-disclosure characteristic of more traditional interaction they are thought to be unable to produce legitimate social bonding Cerulo; Calhoun Parkshowever, in his study of the members of 24 different newsgroups found that more than 60 percent of his subjects said they had formed a personal relationship with someone they first contacted through a newsgroup.
Parks and others See Thomsen,for examplenote that these relationships build over time and often are continued through the use of other communications channels i. In fact, length of time and degree of participation, not surprisingly, contribute to greater rates of relationship building Parks, Reid has also suggested that the problems in relationship building posed by computer-mediated communication are easily overcome.
She explains that the social information required for relationship development can be obtained via computer-mediated interaction, but the process simply takes longer and requires slightly more effort on the part of the participants. David Minger has been a member of the Acoustic Neuroma newsgroup for more than two years. Although his surgery also was more than two years ago, he continues to post messages to new members--often as many as 10 a day.
Mingerpersonal communication, December 8, Recently he hosted an in-person meeting for other newsgroup members who live in the Pacific Northwest near his home. On January 25,Minger posted a message to the newsgroup recounting the success of that gathering: Our first official meeting of the Seattle Acoustic Neuroma Association took place earlier today. We had 23 attendees, which included 7 friends or spouses and 1 youngster, the remainder being AN patients.
A number of other persons who could not attend today plan to attend in the future. We spent 3 hours visiting, introducing ourselves, sharing stories, concerns, tips and thoughts. We met lots of great people and look forward to all of us being able to keep in touch and meet periodically. We will be meeting every three months, so the next meeting will fall in the last part of April Our plans include an annual event where we have speakers from the medical community.
We will also be developing strong liaisons with local hospitals and doctors to let them know we are a resource available for newly diagnosed patients or their friends or families who wish to learn more about AN In his study of the newsgroup PRForum, Thomsen also found that online bonding was a springboard to other forms of off-line interaction, including face-to-face encounters.
In the case of PRForum, which is a newsgroup for public relations professionals, the off-line interaction often led to working relationships and increased opportunity for both professional and social involvement. One PRForum member explained: My cyber-meeting with another member lent me immense credibility when I met her in the flesh at the regional PRSA conference. This helped me get into a position where I became a technical advisor for her book and into other work with PR professionals.
As one Acoustic Neuroma newsgroup member explained: I was wrestling on the mat of indecision even two weeks ago as to my choices of surgery available. Well, I took advice from many sources, including some from this here AN listserver. Thanks gain for notes and so many, many opinions.
Indeed this is a village! Another Acoustic Neuroma newsgroup member posted the following message: Dear all of you: Can you tell my eyes are getting moist? Thank you all so much! The ethnographer must identify the key concepts, the basic unit of cognitive psychology, and their associated linguistic labels or lexemes Emerson To apply these notions to an ethnography of an online community, which exists primarily or solely as textual creation, we must think about how to adapt these epistemological and methodological concerns to the techniques available for textual and discourse analysis.
Textual analysis and ethnography Ethnographies have always taken advantage of written materials from a culture, but that has usually formed only a part of the evidence for analysis. Online communities present the researcher with nothing but text.
The ethnographer cannot observe people, other than through their textual contributions to a forum. All behavior is verbal in the form of text. There are no other artifacts to analyze other than text. Interviewing presents possibilities to meet people in person, but given the dispersed geographical nature of most current online communities, interviewing must usually be done online, again via text.
This necessary emphasis on text presents both opportunities and severe limits. In one sense, there is less for the ethnographer to miss in a text-based world of interaction. All speech, behavior, community rules, and community history is, in principle, likely to be available online for the researcher's inspection.
This may make the task seem deceptively easy. A researcher could sit down at his or her own computer, browse through a community's archive, monitor current postings, and have the world's easiest fieldwork conditions. Researchers must realize, however, the limits, and pros and cons, of text analysis.
There are several textual analysis traditions and techniques upon which to build. This paper will not focus much on the tradition of literary analysis, but will concentrate on a potentially rich tradition, the use of both quantitative and qualitative content analysis by communications scholars and historians. Given the vast amount of text available online, using quantitative content analysis methods to survey a number of communities over larger spans of time seems an intriguing possibility.
Quantitative content analysis does enable the reduction of large amounts of text into numerical data that can be analyzed statistically Holsti, ; Krippendorff,