Rockbund Art Museum 上海外滩美术馆


RAM Talk: History of Field Research and Field Research in History RAM 讲座:田野调查的历史与历史中的田野调查

Event Information

Date: 31 December 2017
Time: 11:00 12:30
Venue: MEM Art Space, No.185 Yuanmingyuan Road, 2F
Speaker: Huang Jianbo
Language: Chinese


日期: 2017年 12月 31日
时间: 11:00 12:30
场馆: 场馆: 上海洛克·外滩源兰心MEM艺术空间,圆明园路185号二楼(由兰心咖啡厅入)
主讲人: 黄剑波
语言: 中文

Field research or fieldwork is a method originally crafted by naturalists and then extended and developed in many other disciplines. In anthropology, fieldwork is more than a research method or a methodology, but is viewed by some anthropologists as a critical feature that differentiates this discipline from others related to humanities and social sciences.

In the early 19th century, fieldwork was dismissed by elite researchers of the nobility as a vulgar and inappropriate activity. However, at the end of 19th century when the British extensively expanded its presence in many areas under the reign of Queen Victoria, fieldwork for exotic culture was largely encouraged and empirical research for practical purposes was valued more than it had been while “armchair anthropologists” were challenged and criticized more than ever. Since the turn of 20th century, fieldwork has become an essential anthropological method.

This talk will explore the use of fieldwork in anthropology along the development of science in modern Western world, and the focus on humanities and cultural diversity which determines the choice of field sites and methods. By looking back in history, the following questions and their relations with the current world will be discussed: how did the research targets and types of fieldwork develop since its emergence? What changes have been made to the meaning of fieldwork to anthropology? How did fieldwork be shaped by history and how did it shape the history in turn? What are the norms of fieldwork in modern anthropology and how were they developed? Will the fieldwork that used to focus on exotic culture, countryside and the “original” world be applied in researches on “us,” the cities and the “modern world,” and how?