Blog post #12- Ethnography

In class we learned about the importance and role ethnography plays in the field of sociology. The Greek word “Ethno” means “people” and “Graphy” means “writing,” so together it means  “writings” about “people.” Ethnography allows sociologists to both investigate the lives of people, but also to report in writing those lives to others. There are two institutional sources, the first being “Colonial Ethnography,” where sociologists wrote about rulership and observed the “cultural savage,” meaning they followed natives and observed their lifestyles to be able to write about them. The second is the Chicago School of Sociology, the first major body of research emerging during the 1920s and 1930s specializing in urban sociology. There are 6 stages of ethnography: Investigating “primitive peoples,” cultural relativism, modernization theory, interpretive ethnography, colonial complicity, and focus on representation. These 6 different categories focus on different sociological aspects, making sociology and its study of the development, structure, and functioning of human society broad so that all things can be observed, written about, and talked about.