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Feminist Ethnography Fall 2012 WST 6935 ( O1H6 ) / ANG 6930 (1F52) Instructor: Professor Florence Babb Mondays 25pm, Ustler Hall 308 Office hours: Fridays 1 3pm and Office tel.: 352 2730384 B y appointment : fbabb @ufl.edu Course description and objective: This graduate seminar will consider issues in qualitative research methodology through reading and discussing feminist ethnographies critical assessments of feminist scholarship and methods and related work We will ask challenging questions about in terdisciplinarity and the dilemmas of field research, including the fundamental question of whether there is indeed a feminist ethnographic methodology. Moreover, we will discuss the feminist politics of ethnogr aphic representation ( by the researcher depicting the researched) and of positionality (of the researcher in relation to the researched). Case studies from a wide range of societies will present opportunities for students to consider the relative merits o f various approaches in feminist anthropology and related fields in the social sciences. Seminar participants will be expected to write frequent prcis based on the reading and to try out their own feminist ethnographic writing as a way to refine analytical and writing skills. A final paper will be due and will be presented at the end of the semester. Course books, available at UF Bookstore Margery Wolf, A Thrice Told Tale : Feminism, Postmodernism, and Ethnographic Responsibility Stanford University Press, 1992. Ruth Behar and Deborah A. Gordon (eds.), Women Writing Culture University of California Press, 19 95. Diane L. Wolf (ed.), Feminist Dilemmas in Fieldwork Westview Press, 1996. Zora Neal e Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God (with foreword by Edwidge Danticat), HarperCollins, 2000 Gina A. Ulysse, Downtown Ladies: Informal Commercial Importers, a Haitian Anthropologist, and Self Making in Jamaica. University of Chicago Press, 2007. Donna M. Goldstein, Laughter Out of Place: Race, Class, Violence, and Sexuality in a Rio Shantytow n. University of California Press, 2003. Lila Abu L ughod, Wri ting Womens Worlds : Bedouin Stories 15 th Anniversary Ed., University of California Press, 2008.
2 Course requirements and policies : Participation Because the course meets just once each week, full attendance in all classes is essential. Students are expected to come to class having done all the reading and to be ready to participate in discussion Everyone will have an opportunity to play a part in facilitati ng the weekly discussion. Brief two page prcis of the weeks read ing will be collected durin g every clas s period between September 10 and November 26 to ensure thoughtful attention to the reading However, note that each student is allowed to skip four of the eleven submissions of prcis and for two of those dates should submit instead a short pi ece of ethnographic writing Be sure that you have submitted a total of nine short pieces of writing for the course, on which you will be graded on a 20 point scale (if you do not have nine submissions, you will receive a zero for the missing entries ). [6 0% of course grade ] Final Paper There will be a course paper of approximately 1820pp based on additional reading and in some cases ethnographic research due at the end of the semester. I will expect to receive proposals for th ese papers by or before Oc tober 29, including short bibliographies of material to be used and referenced These papers may focus on a single ethnographic work to be examined closely or they may draw on multiple works on a specific topic of relevance to the course. E veryone is exp ected to give an oral presentation of their subject matter during the final weeks of the s emester. [4 0% of course grade] Academic Honesty The University of Floridas honor code requires all students to be honest in their academic work. University policie s on cheating, plagiarism, and related issues are available at: http://www.dso.ufl.edu/judicial/procedures/academicguide.html Accommodations Students requesting classroom accom modation must first register with the Dean of Students Office. The Dean of Students Office will provide documentation to the student who must then provide this documentation to me when requesting accommodation. Grading Grade scale: A A B+ B B C+ C CD+ D D E 93 -100 90 -92 87 -89 83-86 80 -82 77-79 73-76 7072 67-69 63 -66 60 -62 59 -below grade points: 4.0 3.67 3.33 3.0 2.67 2.33 2.0 1.67 1.33 1.0 0.67 0 See the following website on current grading policies: http://www.registrar.ufl.edu/catalog/policies/regulationgrades.html
3 Course readings: Aug 27 Introduction to Feminis t Ethnography Read for first class on E reserve : Judith Stacey, Can There Be a Feminist Ethnography? Womens Studies International Forum 11(1) :2127 1988 Lila Abu Lughod, Can There Be a Feminist Ethnography? Women and Performance 5( 1) :7 27, 1990 Also recommended (see pieces by Babb, Blackwood, and Manalansan): Voices special issue in honor of Elizabeth Kennedy (Florence Babb, ed.) 2011 http://www.aaanet.org/sections/afa/wp content/uploads/2011/11/2011Voices.pdf Video: Number Our Days Sept 3 Labor Day (no class) Sept 10 Alternative Approaches Margery Wolf, A Thrice Told Tale (all) Sept 17 Histories of Feminist Ethnog raphy Behar and Gordon (eds.), pp.83 245 Sept 24 Positionality in Feminist R esearch Diane Wolf (ed.) : Feminist Dilemmas in Fieldwork (all) Oct 1 Feminist Politics of Ethnographic Representation Behar and Gordon (eds.), to p. 82 and pp.247335 Oct 8 Zora Neale Hurstons Fiction and Ethnography Their Eyes Were Watching God and selections from Mules and Men Oct 15 Feminist Ethnographies Gina Ulysse, Downtown Ladies to p.131 Oct 22 Ulysse to end
4 [Hurston film and panel on Oct 26] Oct 29 Donna Goldstein, Laughter Out of Place to p.135 Final paper proposals due in class Nov 5 Goldstein, to end Nov 12 Veterans Day (no class) AAA Nov 19 Lila Abu Lughod, Writing Womens Worlds (all) Nov 26 Border Crossings and Intersection ality Behar and Gordon (eds.), pp. 337441 Video: Adio Kerida Dec 3 Class presentations Dec 7 (Fri) Final p apers due