We love stories, and in our work as ethnographers, we love war stories about fieldwork. These experiences – the crazy household, the dog that does his business on your shoes, the GPS failure – are inevitable and are often (at least in hindsight) hilarious. Exchanging these stories is a way of socializing our technique and creating learning opportunities for both tellers and listeners. A culture of exchange – wherever we can find it – is going to help us grow our own skills.
Through this series, we’ll be sharing our own war stories and those of other researchers. Watch this space for the first few war stories, and some info about how you can get your own fieldwork war story published here.