As Ruth Behar wrote, there is a kind of anthropology that “breaks our hearts” (Behar 1996). There is also the question of what to do with the remaining pieces. In sharing some auto-ethnographic reflections about the heart breakings and “rich points” (methodological challenges and unexpected gifts) of native anthropology projects, I hope these insights help other ethnographers to continue refining our critical ethnography tools, questioning and reflecting about the kinds of academic knowledge we wish to produce, and challenging us to consider the implications of research as labor and research as part of our wider life projects.
Unexpected lessons from gardening research, meditative weeding, and other urban multispecies collaborations. Drawing on the experiences and expertise of our members, Culture & Agriculture introduces its “Notes from the Field” series. It is intended as a space for creative, thoughtful reflections on the process of fieldwork that, while not always included in traditional peer-reviewed publications, […]