It seems like Paul Campos over at the Lawyers, Guns, and Money blog is getting with the spirit of ethnographic research.
As Campos notes in his blog, there is indeed a space between journalism and social science which can be called “ethnography.” He makes this point via an ad by a RINO (Republican in Name Only) “hunter” who is running for a seat in the United States Congress from the state of North Carolina. She apparently names her children after Ronald Reagan, and a proud descendant of Confederates who fought in the American Civil War over 150 years ago in order to preserve slavery. The candidate , Kay Daly, makes her final point by firing her gun at a “RINO.” As Campos points out, such a campaign indeed is what can be thought of as “deep text,” a la Stanley Fish.
Anyway, to make sure he makes his point well, Campos links back to my recent post which discussed the “truthiness” of Alice Goffman’s ethnography On the Run, which is about fear of police in Philadelphia, but has nothing to do with RINO hunting. In my review, I asserted that, while it is desirable to get the facts right, it is not the central point in ethnography.
I guess Campos was either bemused or annoyed by my post—I’m not sure which. The link back to Ethnography.com buried, but is nevertheless generating plenty of hit activity over here. Thanks for reading the post, Paul! And congratulations on having one of the catchiest blog titles I’ve seen on the world wide web! Guns, lawyers, and money all in the same URL. Pretty creative!