Amit - Chapter 04 | eBooks | Non-Fiction

Amit - Chapter 04

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Buy and Download Description Network Analysis Then and Now
For a discipline such as anthropology that has traditionally anchored its investigations in the observation of day-to-day interactions among small groups, contemporary efforts to examine globalizing processes can pose special problems of definition and scale. But as Alan Smart has noted in a recent article, these are problems that had first been encountered in the early struggles of urban anthropologists to position themselves as ethnographers in large, dense metropolitan settlements (1999: 60). Smart locates these struggles within a primarily methodological challenge of balancing holism and participant observation within these complex urban contexts, a difficulty even more exacerbated when anthropologists had to "cope with the further shock that cities are not themselves contained units, but are parts of regional, national and global systems" (ibid: 61). In response to this methodological problem, Smart proposes the reinvigoration of network analysis, an approach that achieved considerable prominence in the concerted movement between the 1950s and the 1970s to conduct anthropological fi eldwork in urban settings.2 In this essay, I want to take up Alan Smart's call for a return to network analysis both for the general anthropological effort at charting transnational relationships and interactions as well as for my own study of a particular set of peripatetic professionals. However drawing on some useful lessons from the past, I want to reorient this renewal away from network-as-method to network-as-paradigm. Network Analysis Then and Now For a discipline such as anthropology that has traditionally anchored its investigations in the observation of day-to-day interactions among small groups, contemporary efforts to examine globalizing processes can po
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