In the Field: An Introduction to Field Research

By Robert G.Burgess | Go to book overview

often conducted life history studies using autobiographies, letters and diaries, particular attention has been given to these approaches. However, as Plummer (1983) has shown there is a range of other sources that can be used: oral history, journalism, photographs and films. Many of these have been discussed in greater detail elsewhere: oral history is reviewed by Thompson (1978) and by Bennett (1981), while journalistic accounts are available from Terkel in America (1967, 1970, 1977) and from Parker (1962, 1963, 1967) and Seabrook (1967, 1971, 1973) in Britain. In turn the importance of visual material in the form of photographic evidence is apparent in the work of Berger and Mohr (1967, 1975), Marsden and Duff (1975) and Walker and Wiedel (1985). Meanwhile, case studies are also available in a number of films. Ethnographic films are regularly reviewed in the American Anthropologist, and British television has screened documentary films produced by Roger Graef and ‘narrative documentaries’ by Richard Denton. British television producers have been able to make films that provide detailed case studies of prisons, the police, public schools, and comprehensive schools. However, no matter what documentary evidence is used there are problems concerning authenticity, availability, sampling, interpretation and presentation. All of these issues therefore need to be considered by researchers who use documentary evidence of any kind. However, the value of documentary evidence is that it provides data which may be used to examine social categories and social processes. In this sense, these data link up with other data that are obtained in the conduct of field research.


Suggestions for Further Reading

Methodology

There is a large literature on documents. However, it is vital to consider arguments that have direct relevance for the use of documentary materials in field research. Accordingly, the following books and papers should be consulted:


a
Allport G.W. (1942), The Use of Personal Documents in Psychological Science, Bulletin No. 49 (New York: Social Science Research Council); is a classic report on documentary research.

b
Bertaux, D. (1981) (ed.), Biography and Society: The Life History Approach in the Social Sciences (Beverly Hills, Calif: Sage); contains papers on epistemological issues, life history as oral history and a range of empirical examples.
Burgess, R.G. (1982) (ed.), Field Research: a Sourcebook and Field Manual (London: Allen & Unwin). Section Five on historical sources in field research contains papers on written documents, oral sources and life histories (Mandelbaum, 1973; Thompson, 1972; Samuel, 1976).

-140-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
In the Field: An Introduction to Field Research
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 254

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.