This clear, straightforward textbook embraces the practical reality of actually doing fieldwork. It tackles the common problems faced by new researchers head on, offering sensible advice and instructive case studies from the author’s own experience. Barbara Czarniawska takes us on a master class through the research process, encouraging us to revisit the various facets of the fieldwork research and helping us to reframe our own experiences. Combining a conversational style of writing with an impressive range of empirical examples she takes the reader from planning and designing research to collecting and analyzing data all the way to writing up and disseminating findings. This is a sophisticated introduction to a broad range of research methods and methodologies; it will be of great interest to anyone keen to revisit social research in the company of an expert guide.

Writing it Up

Writing it Up

Writing is seen as craft in this chapter, and the advice on how to improve one’s craftsmanship is extracted from both rhetoric (how to structure a convincing argument) and literary theory (how to construct representations, characters, and plots). The final examples of excellent writing styles are to serve as models for beginners.

How fieldwork is written

Textwork is suturing together of two words meant to convey that writing is a labor-intensive craft. (Van Maanen, 2006: 13)

In an article titled ‘Ethnography then and now’, John Van Maanen examined two decades of ethnographic writing. His observations have relevance beyond ethnography, however, and can be applied to all types of writing studies based on fieldwork.

The changes that occurred in ethnographic writing were not dramatic, but ...

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