Click the star to add/remove an item to/from your individual schedule.
You need to be logged in to avail of this functionality, and to see the links to virtual rooms.


Conceptual writing for ethnographers 
Ezequiel Soriano (Open University of Catalonia (UOC))
Send message to Convenor
Tuesday 23 July, -
Time zone: Europe/Madrid
Add to Calendar:

Short Abstract:

A workshop to expand ethnographic writing. Based on literary works in conceptual writing, we will experiment writing by copying texts and automating writing processes. We aim to problematize the ideas of originality and authorship to understand writing as a collaborative practice.

Long Abstract:

As Clifford Geertz said, writing is the central ethnographic activity. If this is true, we need to expand what we call "writing" and how we write to explore new ways of doing ethnography. Conceptual writing has rethought how we approach texts and what it means to write since the advent of the Internet. Faced with the amount of text available on the Web, copying, appropriation or the implementation of machine processes have emerged as relevant forms of conceptual writing.

Inspired by avant-garde and visual arts, conceptual writing approaches text as a material and writing as a practice. It opens up writing to rescue it from its conception as an individual act of translating ideas into words. Writing from a material approach involves an embodied practice that decentres the subject-author to think of it as a collaboration. How can ethnography engage with this approach? Literary works such as Vanessa Place's Tragodia or Kenneth Goldsmith's Traffic, made up of appropriated texts from legal procedures and radio news, respectively, display a para-ethnographic treatment—a representation of social realities similar to ethnographic film.

In this workshop, we will experiment with copying, appropriation, selection, and automation in writing to think about other forms of ethnographic writing. We will write with predictive text tools and compose texts from appropriated material from the Internet. Through practice and experimentation, we will attempt to answer the question of how ethnography can incorporate the methods and textual approaches of conceptual writing.

Participants need to bring a laptop and their smartphone.