Mad Dogs, Englishmen, and the Errant Anthropologist - Hamilton College

Mad Dogs, Englishmen, and the Errant Anthropologist

According to Douglas Raybeck, professor of anthropology, the solitary dictum that best characterizes fieldwork is “Things go awry.” In this spirited account of his time spent in Southeast Asia, Raybeck describes several adventures and misadventures involving field research, as well as the understanding, humility and bruises that these experiences leave behind. Since fieldwork is situated, Raybeck’s treatment also includes rich descriptions of Kelantanese society and culture, addressing such topics as kinship, linguistics, gender relations, economics, and political structures. Through the lively pages of this narrative, readers gain insight into the human dimension of the fieldwork undertaking, a sense of how the anthropologist builds rapport in a research setting, and how reliable information is obtained.

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