Ethnographers Collaborating





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Created date

May 10, 2019

Critical Commentary

A group of ethnographers--grad students, postdocs, faculty and friends from UC Irvine and UCLA-- gathered to collect and share field notes and on-the-go ethnographic insights for the first Field Works: Soiled Grounds workshop in Signal Hill, CA.

Following a brief "tour" of the vast panorama visible from the city's Hilltop Park, participants broke off into small groups to explore the surrounding neighborhood.

Initial provocations from the workshop script:

STEP 1: FIELD WORKS [~10 - 15  minutes]

Form pairs or small groups. Consider working with someone you don’t know yet.

Together, discuss the research questions you drafted for this trip. What kinds of data do  you need to answer this question? As a group, settle on a single research question to work with today.

Alternatively, you may choose to work with this question:

What forms of risk and vulnerability are produced in “late industrial California,” and how are they produced?


Walk in silence with your group. You may choose any route (see map on the previous page) or stay in place.

Take in the view. Ask yourself:

What do you notice first? How do you notice it?

What do you notice later? How does it come into view?

What do you see that informs, or helps to answer, your research questions?

You may take field notes in the space below.