The Ethnographic Case (2nd Edition)

The 1st Edition of The Ethnographic Case, published in 2017, was an experiment in post-publication peer review, with the book published online and open to comments from readers.

In this new 2nd edition, to be published later this year, the editors and authors have updated the text, both in response to these comments and taking into account changing contexts in the years since the book’s first publication. This new edition, including a new introduction and conclusion, is not only available free to read online, but also to purchase as a hard copy.

The Ethnographic Case (2nd Edition)

A doctor injects turpentine into the leg of a dying patient; the patient lives and years later a granddaughter uses this story of survival to write a story of her own. A refugee is questioned in court for falsifying paternity; a cultural expert intervenes to develop a legal case for kinship that exceeds DNA. The actions of a caring father pose a dilemma for how a filmmaker represents Ecuadorian sex workers. In all three chapters, “the case” shapes possibilities for action. In each chapter, the practice of case-making is also specific to the details of the case. The Ethnographic Case challenges a widespread academic inclination to treat concepts as immutable mobiles. The contributions to this volume develop “ethnographic casing” as a technique of attending to heterogeneities in systems of thought. Medical cases. Legal cases. Museum showcases. Detective cases. Some cases featured are violent, others compassionate; some set stereotypes in motion, others break them down. Connected more by difference than similarity, the “cases” in this volume make a case for the virtue of relational science. This is a science that is not beholden to master narratives, but which embraces the double-work of caring for detail, while caring for the practices through which one learns to care. In 26 gripping and provocative installations, the volume showcases research from numerous influential feminist and decolonial scholars. Where anthropology has long sought to identify patterns in culture, this volume makes space for inquiry focused on particularities and advocates for an intellectual politics where that which seemingly doesn’t fit is still allowed to matter.

Table of Contents

0. Foreword, Christine Labuski and Emily Yates-Doerr

1. Introduction, Emily Yates-Doerr & Christine Labuski

2. Exemplary: The case of the farmer and the turpentine, Annemarie Mol

3. Autophony: Listening to your eyes move, Anna Harris

4. Encased: Plotting attentions through distraction, Melissa S. Biggs and John Bodinger de Uriarte

5. No judgments: Fieldwork on the spectrum, Faye Ginsburg and Rayna Rapp

6. Facial paralysis: Somaticising frustration in Guatemala, Nicholas Copeland

7. ‘He didn’t blow us up’ – routine violence and non-event as case, Ken MacLeish

8. What’s in a name? A case of trafficking in other people’s stories, Ruth Goldstein

9. Normalising sexually violated bodies: Sexual assault adjudication, medical evidence and the legal case, Sameena Mulla

10. Case by case, Jason Danely

11. The case of the ugly sperm, Janelle Lamoreaux

12. Waiting in the face of bare life, Aaron Ansell

13. Crossing boundaries: The case for making sense with the sense-able, Christy Spackman

14. Swamp dialogues: Filming ethnography, Ildikó Zonga Plájás

15. What is a family? Refugee DNA and the possible truths of kinship, Carole McGranahan

16. A polygraphic casebook, Susan Reynolds Whyte

17. Travelling within the case, Atsuro Morita

18. The case of the cake: Dilemmas of giving and taking, Rima Praspaliauskiene

19. From fish lives to fish law: Learning to see Indigenous legal orders in Canada, Zoe Todd

20. Ethnographic case, legal case: From the spirit of the law to the law of the spirit, André Menard and Constanza Tizzoni

21. The enclosed case, Elizabeth Lewis

22. Making Cases for a Technological Fix: Germany’s Energy Transition and the Green Good Life, Jennifer Carlson

23. Filming sex/gender: The ethics of (mis)representation, Anna Wilking

24. Three millimetres, Christine Labuski

25. The discernment of knowledge: Sexualised violence in the Mennonite church, Stephanie Krehbiel

26. Earthly togetherness: Making a case for living with worms,Filippo Bertoni

27. Refusing extraction: Unearthing the messiness of activist research, Teresa A. Velásquez

28. Fixing things, moving stories, Jenna Grant

29. The ethnographic case: In-conclusion, Anna Dowrick, Julien McHardy, Joe Deville

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