The Forgotten Ones: Colombian Countrymen in an Urban Setting

The Forgotten Ones: Colombian Countrymen in an Urban Setting

The Forgotten Ones: Colombian Countrymen in an Urban Setting

The Forgotten Ones: Colombian Countrymen in an Urban Setting

Excerpt

This study was something of a homecoming for me, as I had known Popayán since childhood, when my father, also an anthropologist, took us to live there in 1951-52 and again in 1962. Returning there in 1970 seemed quite a natural thing to do, and the prospect of seeing old acquaintances who would facilitate the transition into the field presented me with an advantage not shared by most of my colleagues on their initial major fieldwork expedition.

The first stage of fieldwork consisted of visiting the city's new areas and talking both with residents there and with people in town who knew about Popayán's recent growth. Originally, I had hoped to do a comparative study of two neighborhoods, a government-sponsored housing project and an independent development, but quickly realized that because of time constraints this would have to be postponed. At the same time I decided against studying a government housing project, for two reasons. First, a two-year residency requirement would eliminate recent arrivals to the city, people whose initial attitudes and reactions I wanted to study. Second, the stipulation that residents have a certain monthly in-

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