Go to AfricaBib home

Go to AfricaBib home Africana Periodical Literature Go to database home

bibliographic database

Previous page New search

The free AfricaBib App for Android is available here

Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Beyond ethical imperatives in South African anthropology: morally repugnant and unlikeable subjects
Author:Van Wyk, IlanaISNI
Periodical:Anthropology Southern Africa (ISSN 2332-3264)
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:anthropological research
interpersonal relations
Abstract:Anthropologists' dislike of their subjects in the field poses both epistemological and ethical questions that go beyond concerns about harming or exploiting the people they study, about maintaining human relationships, or about the self-reflexivity and competence of individual anthropologists. In South Africa, where social anthropology has long defined its raison d'Ítre in terms of a liberal political agenda of exposť and a politics of representing the marginalised (Robert J. Gordon & Andrew D. Spiegel, 1993), the potential negative framing of structurally defined poor people is especially uncomfortable. The author argues that dislike, while threatening the very basis of anthropologists' claims to engage in proper ethical relationships with their subjects, needs not prevent research among 'unlikeable' or morally 'repugnant' Others as long as it is acknowledged and interrogated. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract, edited]