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'Conducting Fieldwork in the Middle East': Report of a Workshop Held at the University of Edinburgh on 12 February 2007

Yasir Suleiman and Paul Anderson
British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
Vol. 35, No. 2 (Aug., 2008), pp. 151-171
Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd.
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20455582
Page Count: 21
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'Conducting Fieldwork in the Middle East': Report of a Workshop Held at the University of Edinburgh on 12 February 2007
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Abstract

The workshop explored the practice of fieldwork in the Middle East. It considered the methods and techniques used by scholars, obstacles and opportunities encountered in the field, and the way that these influenced the research product. It also asked to what extent, if any, these features of conducting fieldwork were particular to the Middle East. The workshop examined these issues from a variety of disciplinary perspectives, including anthropology, political science, history and literature. It brought together selected scholars who had conducted fieldwork in a range of countries across the Middle East. The resulting discussion considered both practical issues such as negotiating access to sources, developing networks of contacts, and the effect of censorship; as well as theoretical questions such as the positionality of the researcher; the relationship between 'the field' and theory; and the ways in which the Middle East as a region challenged the assumptions of some academic disciplines.

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