Rees, Tobias, insitigator. “Concept Work and Collaboration in the Anthropology of the Contemporary,” ARC Exchange, No. 1, July, 2007.

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July 3, 2018

Critical Commentary

From the Introduction: "The relationship between ethnography and anthropological method is at the center of these questions raised in the Exchange presented here. On the one hand, the participants consider various questions concerning the status of ethnographic authority, and its relationship to the broader problem of method. On the other hand, they explore other models of inquiry – particularly collaboration – and consider its relationship to the norms of ethnographic work. Key questions raised are: Should fieldwork still be regarded as an essential technique of knowledge production? Is it adequate to the changing empirical focus of anthropological production? What are the consequences of the privilege that continues to be given to ethnography? What are the legitimation functions of ethnography in contemporary anthropology? Should ethnography be regarded as a method or merely as one technique among several – some perhaps not yet invented – techniques? What practices and norms of inquiry might orient an alternative discussion of method in anthropology? And what role might collaboration and concept work play in such a discussion?