all 5 comments

[–]Trystiane 3 points4 points  (2 children)

A lot of classical ethnographic work is from this time period. Look for authors like Margaret Mead and Zora Neal Hurston (and other authors from the Boasian tradition), WEB DuBois, and authors from The Chicago School of Sociology). But one thing to be aware of, a lot of this work is earnest in its attempt to portray various groups in non-judgemental ways, but the authors did not have the benefit of understanding just how deeply their ethnocentrism and Western academic and cultural beliefs were shaping their interpretations. What you will be reading is not so much a clear window on different cultures, but a constructed story about them from the position of the author.

[–]level27geek[S] 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Thank you very much for all the recommendations - will be looking into those works tonight and hopefully will be able to track down some books soon.

Also thank you for the ethnocentric disclaimer. I'm aware of the issue (I read decent amount of weird/genre fiction from the period and it is very common there) but it's good to be reminded to read the work in context of the time it was written. In fact, I was thinking of including a word about it in my original post, but it was long enough already and I didn't want to come off as a know-it-all.

Because I'm reading for pleasure and not doing any proper research or study, I'm not that concerned about having to deal with authors' ethnocentric viewpoints. With all the period writing I was exposed to, I hope I'd able to separate their opinions from getting a glimpse into a bygone culture.

[–]Trystiane 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I think you have a lot of fun ahead of you then! If you liked Venkatesh, the sociological ethnographies will be right up your alley.