Referensi Jurnal & Buku Politik

The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, Number 642 July 2012

the annalsBringing Fieldwork Back In: Contemporary Urban Ethnographic Research
The Iconic Ghetto
Elijah Anderson
In the minds of many Americans, the ghetto is where “the black people live,” symbolizing an impoverished, crime-prone, drug-infested, and violent area of the city. Aided by the mass media and popular culture, this image of the ghetto has achieved an iconic status, and serves as a powerful source of stereotype, prejudice, and discrimination. The history of racism in America, along with the ascription of “ghetto” to anonymous blacks, has burdened blacks with a negative presumption they
must disprove before they can establish mutually trusting relationships with others. The poorest blacks occupy a caste-like status, and for the black middle class, contradictions and dilemmas of status are common, underscoring the racial divide and exacerbating racial tensions.
The Legacy of Racial Caste: An Exploratory Ethnography
Elijah Anderson, Duke W. Austin, Craig Lapriece Holloway, and Vani S. Kulkarni
With the racial progress the nation has made over the past half century, including the growth of the black middle class and the election of a black president, many are now prepared to proclaim the United States a postracial society, where egalitarian values most often prevail; race is no longer a significant barrier to power, privilege, and prestige; and racial prejudice is mostly a thing of the past. When observed ethnographically, the lived experience of race relations suggests a different view and
conceptual framework. As the legacy of racial caste, the color line persists in social interaction and is evident in racially determined perspectives and local working conceptions that order race relations and contribute to persistent racial inequality. Indeed, the claim of a postracial society is an ideological discourse that denies continuing patterns of race relations.
“An Air of Expectancy”: Class, Crisis, and the Making of Manhood at a Historically Black College for Men
Saida Grundy
This qualitative study explores formations of masculinity among students at a historically black all- male college, offering insights into how the institution crafts the manhood of its students in accordance with gender and class ideologies about black male respectability, heteronormativity, and male hegemony. While a plethora of studies on poverty, deviance, and marginalization have highlighted black men “in crisis,” this article examines middle-class black men and explores sites of
conflict and difference for this latter group. Three critical insights into middle-class black masculinity are revealed by this approach: first, that men are institutionally “branded” through class and gender ideologies; second, that the exceptionality of high-achieving black men is politicized to endorse class conflict with other black men; and finally, that sexuality and class performances are inseparably
linked through men’s sexual consumption of black women.
Bonds of Brotherhood: Emotional and Social Support among College Black Men
Brandon A. Jackson
This article draws on two years of observation to analyze the ways in which a group of black men promoted, ritualized, enforced, and enacted brotherhood on a predominantly white campus. These men utilized the concept of brotherhood to unite those who shared a marginalized status. The notion of brotherhood enabled the men to express their emotions, violating some of the dominant cultural tenets of manhood. Although black men face many obstacles in white-dominated middle-class social
worlds, these men did not passively accept those troubles; they came together and collectively created a brotherhood to help them survive and succeed.
Abductive Ethnography of Practice in Highly Uncertain Conditions
Vida Bajc
The highly contextual nature of ethnographic inquiry allows a researcher to develop and adjust data collection and analysis to specific social situations. This methodological flexibility also makes it possible to choose for analytic attention specific instances of human activity and experience that show potential to illuminate conceptual issues or alter our theoretical understandings. Theoretically
interesting social activity can be identified using Peircean abduction. In the field, the researcher embraces serendipity and intuition. Data analysis begins neither with inductive nor deductive reasoning. By initially disassociating the data from their context, specific theoretical debates, and the experience of data collection in the field, the ethnographer is able to play with the data freely and let this process generate a surprising discovery. This discovery is then articulated through a dialog
among insight, contextualized empirical evidence, and theoretical knowledge. Leaving open the possibilities of insight and discovery, abductive ethnography is a strategy of unforeclosed possibilities.
“Scrub”: Using Multi-Site Analysis to Analyze the Status System among Basketball Players
Scott N. Brooks
Conducting ethnographic fieldwork in varied spaces, with different actors, enriches our understanding. A researcher may find paradoxes in practices and ideas and ask for clarification, or recognize that social dynamics and behavior are peculiar to group members present in a specific setting. This article highlights the usefulness of intentional variability and flexibility in the field. Researchers should plan to do multi-site analysis (MSA) to look for negative cases and opportunities
to challenge commonsense notions. Additionally, this article emphasizes that the relationships built during fieldwork shape the data that are captured. Therefore, researchers need to consider the bases for their relationships, including what the subjects get out of them, and how subjects’ positionality affects what comes to be known. This perspective de-emphasizes false norms of objectivity and
renders a more complete account of the social worlds we study.
Suspending Narrative Engagements: The Case of Pick-Up Basketball
Michael F. DeLand
This article explores the way social actors organize their engagements in real time. The term “narrative” points to the subjectively understood practical projects that people structure with
beginnings, middles, and ends. All projects may be interrupted, and if social actors are to continue
the narrative engagement they must treat the stoppage as a mere suspension. The work of
suspending a game of informal pick-up basketball is examined in three phases: interrupting the
game, treating the game as suspended, and resuming play. In each phase, players collectively resist
the possibility of abandonment as an alternative to game resumption. While narrative structuring is a
powerful locus of meaning across diverse social contexts, informal basketball games offer a
particularly good setting for the study of narrative organization in social life.
“The Camera Rolls”: Using Third-Party Video in Field Research
Nikki Jones and Geoffrey Raymond
This article draws on one citizen’s efforts to document daily life in his neighborhood. The authors
describe the potential benefits of third-party video—videos that people who are not social scientists
have recorded and preserved—to social science research. Excerpts from a collection of police-citizen
interactions illustrate key points likely to confront researchers who use third-party video. The
authors address two important questions: How might the presence of a video camera affect the
unfolding of interactions that are recorded in third-party videos? and How might the perspective of
the videographer influence the production and preservation of these records and, in turn, what
influence might this standpoint have on our analysis of the data? The authors argue that, given the
ubiquity of handheld video recording devices, social scientists should develop systematic approaches
to using video created by others as both a cultural record and as data.
An Ethnographic Portrait of a Precarious Life: Getting By on Even Less
Waverly O. Duck
This article presents an ethnographic study of life in an impoverished black urban neighborhood
through the experiences and perspectives of a single mother of four. Her survival strategies shed
light on the disproportionate effects of recent social policies on poor racial-ethnic minority groups.
Having trouble paying bills is nothing new. As Carol Stack has shown, extended kinship networks
offer crucial resources that can enable single-parent families to survive. Over the past decade and a
half, however, welfare reform, increases in the rates of arrest and incarceration for poor black men,
and a spate of evictions are putting serious pressure on networks that were already overextended
and now have too few solvent members. Poor families are left in a precarious situation. The in-depth
story of one woman illuminates the issues that many people in this precarious position face in
everyday life.
Down and Out in Atlantic City
Jacob Avery
This article draws on ethnographic fieldwork and interviews to provide a sociological life history of a
man the author calls George. George lived on Atlantic City’s streets between 1995 and 2009. Instead
of accessing available social services, George stayed outside year-round, even during the cold winter
months. He obtained small amounts of money by begging for spare change and slept in alleyways,
casino bus terminals, underneath the Boardwalk, and behind garbage dumpsters until his death.
George’s story reveals how someone who likely would have been committed during the era depicted
in Goffman’s Asylums (1961) had viable alternatives to confinement within an institution. This article
has two aims. First, it adds empirical depth to literature on working-age, unhoused men
disconnected from formal labor markets and social service systems. A second, more analytical aim is
to extend our thinking about Goffman’s concept of moral career.
The Making and Unmaking of Local Democracy in an Indian Village
Vani S. Kulkarni
This study is an ethnographic investigation of a gram sabha (village assembly), the cornerstone of
local democracy, in Soonaghalli, in the Mandya district of Southern Karnataka, India. Observation of
the meeting and informal, open-ended conversations with the key actors illuminated how
democratic policies that are conceived at the global level are practiced and experienced by local
community members. The article speaks to the significance of moving beyond the prevailing politico-
institutional framework of democracy that is dominated by concerns about formal regime shifts and
focusing on informal practices that contribute to the making and unmaking of democratic
governance. The findings shed light on the varied forms that deliberative processes take and on
multiple meanings of deliberative cultures, emphasizing the need for a comparative sociological
inquiry into democratic practices for a richer formulation of democratic theory.
“Call Me Mama”: An Ethnographic Portrait of an Employer of Undocumented Workers
Esther Chihye Kim
Based on three years of participant observation, this article provides insight into the working
relationship between a small business owner and undocumented immigrant workers at a Korean-
Japanese restaurant. The case study focuses on a Korean American businesswoman who depends on
the unpaid labor of family members and the cheap labor of undocumented immigrants. Using
naturalistic ethnography, which consists of casual interactions and conversations with informants,
the author relates the life history of the owner, Mrs. Kwon, who asks her employees to call her
“Mama,” and analyzes her preference for undocumented immigrant workers. The article elucidates
the ways she asserts power and control in the workplace.
The Presentation of Self in Emigration: Eastern European Women in Italy
Martina Cvajner
This article, based on five years of ethnographic fieldwork, describes the strategies for the
presentation of the Self employed by Eastern European immigrant women in the Italian northeast.
These middle-aged women migrated alone, are employed as live-in care workers, and often lack legal
status. For them, migration is a deeply felt trauma, which they narrate as being forced upon them by
the collapse of the USSR and the failures of the transition to a market economy. They perceive their
life in Italy as degrading, their work is stressful and undignified, they miss their children, and they are
often seen as poor mothers with questionable morals. Consequently, they seek to dilute the social
stigma, presenting positive images of their selves and claiming respect from a variety of audiences.
The women continuously endeavor to define their current condition as accidental and temporary and
to assert their right to a better future.
“Influx”: Black Urban Women’s Migration to Rural Pennsylvania
Betty L. McCall
As a direct result of the 1995 welfare reform legislation, some metropolitan areas relocated women
on their welfare rolls through a process called “Greyhound therapy.” Many of these women ended
up in rural areas that were not only unprepared to meet their specific needs but also not receptive to
their presence. This article tells the story of these women, who were moved almost two hundred
miles from a large Pennsylvania city to a small town in a rural region.
“Litterers”: How Objects of Physical Disorder Are Used to Construct Subjects of
Social Disorder in a Suburb
Alexandra K. Murphy
How do people get constructed as “litterers” through objects of litter on the ground? Middle- and
working-class white and black homeowners of the suburb under ethnographic study believe that
litter is a significant problem in their community. Despite rarely seeing anyone actually litter, they
develop folk theories that blame this problem on black, poor renters moving into the suburb. This
article documents the structural features that sustain litter accumulation across different spaces. It
then examines how longtime residents interpret these patterns and use their own behavior toward
litter (picking it up) to claim a moral status for themselves as community insiders while constructing
those they perceive as outsiders as disreputable litterers. The author considers the relationship
between physical and social disorder as they construe it and the consequences of this process for
theories of ecological contamination and the reinforcement of racial and class distinctions.
Reflections of Self from Missing Things: How People Move On from Losing Possessions
Brandon Berry
When people fail to locate a personal belonging, it often evokes disturbing reflections of self that
they will seek to overcome. While ethnomethodology once manufactured breaches in the taken-for-
granted order to reveal the implicit rules of social life, this article explores how people try to recover
from such breaches occurring naturally in their material environment. Drawing on a database of
about five hundred cases of naturally occurring losses collected through several ethnographic
techniques, this article demonstrates how people get back to life as usual through four unique paths.
Through each, individuals resolve or avoid the disturbances caused when their taken-for-granted
sense of what objects are immediately available to them breaks down.
Wounded: Life after the Shooting
Jooyoung Lee
Most gunshot victims do not die. In some estimates, 80 percent live to see another day. Yet social
scientists continue to focus on gun homicide. What happens to individuals who get shot and survive?
How do they experience life after the shooting? This article examines how gunshot injuries transform
the lives of victims. In practical ways, gunshot injuries complicate sleeping, eating, working, and
other previously taken-for-granted activities. These disruptions also have much larger existential
significance to victims. Indeed, daily experiences with a wounded body become subjective reminders
that individuals are no longer who they used to be. Ironically, in some interactions, being wounded
becomes attractive and advantageous to victims. Together, these themes illustrate the need for
more sustained ethnographic work on the foreground of violent crime victimization.
Ethnography’s Expanding Warrants
Jack Katz
Because ethnographies report what is already known in some part of society, the warrant for the
method is uniquely double. Each ethnography promises both positive and negative knowledge, a
contribution to understanding the social logic that organizes some area of social life and a
contribution to the sociology of ignorance. Those reported in this volume illustrate seven distinct
warrants that hinge on morally charged forces blocking the dissemination of knowledge about locally
known social realities. In addition, running through many of the studies is a focus on an amoral
warrant. Ethnographies are distinctively suited for studying the ubiquitous, naturally occurring hiding
that is necessarily part of social expression, or how things are hidden in the foundations of the social