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This panel explores the methodological implications of a "symmetrical" and "experimental" production of ethnographic theory. Highlighting the openness of ethnographic enquiry, we are interested in creating a dialectical tension among different kinds of genres, and between observer and observed.
In this panel we explore the methodological implications (and complications, at times) of adopting an ethnographic openness. Through the analytical concepts of "symmetry" and "experimentation" we wish to push the production of ethnographic theory to its limits, by questioning the strict distinctions among different kinds of genres when it comes to textualizing ethnographic enquiry, as well as the distinction between observer and observed. Speaking of pushing the limits, we do not necessary mean to imply that there are no limits and distinctions but, perhaps precisely because of their presence, rule-breaking efforts to surpass them are as constitutive as the more formal and official efforts to impose them. Thus, rule-breaking in this panel will be a notion of reflection of the symmetry between ethnographic context and the production of theory. The main conceptual and research question becomes: How do ethnography and theory enter a dynamic dialogue wherein one breaks the rules of the other?