Applied Methods Seminars at the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology in Hamburg
Ideally, anthropologists should participate for a long period of time in the daily life of the culture to which their research is dedicated. Clearly, however, this kind of field research cannot be integrated into the Social and Cultural Anthropology BA program. Nonetheless, we regularly offer two research method courses in the BA program in order to enable our students to gain experience in ethnographic field research:
"Quantitative Methods" is dedicated to the collection of quantitative data. In this course students will learn, for example, how to develop a questionnaire, carry out a survey, and analyze data.
"Qualitative Data and Methods" teaches students how to collect and analyze extensive cultural knowledge with only one informant. Based on the McCurdy, Spradley, and Shandy approach to researching micro-cultures, culture is defined as the learned and shared knowledge people use to generate behaviour and interpret experiences (McCurdy et al. 2005:5). Micro-culture refers to a special section of life shared by a group of people, for example, those working in a bank or sharing leisure time activities.
McCurdy, David W., James P. Spradley, and Dianna J. Shandy 2005: The Cultural Experience. Ethnography in Complex Society. Second Edition. Long Grove, Illinois.
Participants of the seminar "Qualitative Data and Methods" (developed by by Julia Pauli) are given the task of selecting a micro-culture and an informant in Hamburg. At least six qualitative interviews are carried out with the informants, which participants then transcribe and analyze. As a result, several excellent reports have been written in the years and course of this seminar. Several reports have been selected and published in order to provide insight into these interesting research projects, all of which represent an important activity in ethnographic research. All informants agreed to the publication and all data has been rendered anonymous. We look forward to your comments (please contact jan.budniok"AT"uni-hamburg.de). Enjoy the reports!
Lea Albrecht (2012):
Privatheit, Gemeinschaft und Öffentlichkeit im Dominikanerkonvent
Lillian Grössner (2015):
Der Mythos von Gemeinschaft: Vergemeinschaftung in der Fanszene des FC St. Pauli