Writing what is told

On ethnographic narrative and text





ethnography, pretextual, text, knowledge, fieldwork, experience


Aim. The aim of this paper is to depict difficulties in presenting ethnographically collected narratives - recorded and transcripted – as written texts. Multifaceted fieldwork experience when translated into form required in academic work is unavoidably reduced. It losts variety of aspects impossible to express just by written language required by academic discourse. Simultaneously written language is influencing and shaping pre-textual fieldwork experience.

Method. The study is a theoretical afterthought based on the fieldwork experience gained during research concerning modes of constructing reminiscent narratives in one of lower-silesian villages in years 2013-2016.  

Resullt and Conclusions. The analysis shows indispensable impact of medium of written language of process of gaining and presenting ethnographical knowledge. It presents its influence and limitations in the process of building fieldwork experience.


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Author Biography

Anna Gańko, Institute of Polish Culture, Poland

Studied anthropology and philosophy. In 2016 finished her diploma in Institute of Polish Culture (Warsaw University)g based on ethnographical project on reminiscent narratives in the village on lower Silesia in Poland.

Currently she is a PhD student in Institute of Polish Culture and working on PhD project referring to abandoned places (especially in urban context) and their symbolic functioning in narratives as well as their role in social practices. Since 2017 coordinates project Anthropology and architecture basing on cooperation of anthropologists – urban researchers and architects. Areas of academic interests: reminiscent narratives, anthropology of word, anthropology of space and place, fiedwork methodology



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How to Cite

Gańko, A. (2018). Writing what is told: On ethnographic narrative and text. Journal of Education Culture and Society, 9(2), 229–237. https://doi.org/10.15503/jecs20182.229.237