The strength of anthropology is that we are always learning, gathering data isn’t something we do in a lab or even something we can easily shut off. We learn through immersion, living in the same cultural context as the people we are studying. We call it participant-observation occasionally even deep hanging out in an attempt to over emphasize the causal nature of one of our greatest tools. However, the point remains the same; we need to absorb the social context while simultaneously analyzing the layers of that reality and how they might affect the situation being studied. Then when the moment is right, we start asking thoughtful questions. Sometimes formally in a pre-planned interview setting and sometimes informally while sitting on a couch in someone’s living room or at a local fair in the park. One thoughtfully worded question, placed in the right setting and time, can reveal far more insightful information than a thousand questions asked without context. That is the argument of our discipline.
What Anthropologists Do
Published by sydneyyeager
Hello! My name is Dr. Sydney Yeager. I'm a Digital Anthropologist with over 15 years of experience in mixed-methods research, focused on making sense of human behavior and experience. I have a passion about identifying and solving the right problem and believes human-centered research is the key to doing that in the most ethical and efficient way. Earning my Ph.D. from Southern Methodist University in Cultural Anthropology focused on social media user experiences and their health consequences, I've worked in digital marketing, market research, and product management. View more posts
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