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The Ethnographic Imagination

The Ethnographic Imagination by Paul Willis
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In this book Paul Willis, a renowned sociologist and ethnographer,aims to renew and develop the ethnographic craft across thedisciplines. Drawing from numerous examples of his own past andcurrent work, he shows that ethnographic practice and theethnographic imagination are vital to understanding the creativityand irreducibility of experience in all aspects of social andcultural practice.

Willis argues that ethnography plays a vital role in constituting'sensuousness' in textual, methodological, and substantive ways,but it can do this only through the deployment of an associatedtheoretical imagination which cannot be found simply there in thefield. He presents a bold and incisive ethnographically orientedview of the world, emphasizing the need for a deep-running socialbut also aesthetic sensibility. In doing so he brings new insightsto the understanding of human action and its dialectical relationto social and symbolic structures. He makes original contributionsto the understanding of the contemporary human uses of objects,artefacts and communicative forms, presenting a new analysis ofcommodity fetishism as central to consumption and to the widersocial relations of contemporary societies. He also utilizes hisperspective to further the understanding of the contemporary crisisin masculinity and to cast new light on various lived everydaycultures - at school, on the dole, on the street, in the Mall, infront of TV, in the dance club.

This book will be essential reading for all those involved inplanning or contemplating ethnographic fieldwork and for thoseinterested in the contributions it can make to the social sciencesand humanities.
Wiley; May 2013
176 pages; ISBN 9780745669120
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Title: The Ethnographic Imagination
Author: Paul Willis
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