The illusion that ethnography is a matter of sorting strange and irregular facts into familiar and orderly categoriesthis is magic, that is technologyhas long since been exploded. What it is instead, however, is less clear. That it might be a kind of writing, putting things to paper, has now and then occurred to those engaged in producing it, consuming it, or both. But the examination of it as such has been impeded by several considerations, none of them very reasonable. One of these, especially weighty among the producers, has been simply that it is an unanthropological sort of thing to do. What a proper ethnographer ought properly to be doing is going out to places, coming back with information about how people live there, and making that information available to the professional community in practical form, not lounging about in libraries reflecting on literary questions. Excessive concern, which in practice usually means any concern at all, with how ethnographic texts are constructed seems like an unhealthy self-absorptiontime wasting at best, hypochondriacal at worst. The advantage of shifting at least part of our attention from the fascinations of field work, which have held us so long in thrall, to those of writing is not only that this difficulty will become more clearly understood, but also that we shall learn to read with a more percipient eye. A hundred and fifteen years (if we date our profession, as conventionally, from Tylor) of asseverational prose and literary innocence is long enough.
In the early 1950s Britain was still the most urbanized and industrialized nation in the world, a global power in shipbuilding and the leading European producer of coal, steel, cars and textiles. For the many millions of men and women hard at work during that time, an infernal landscape of smoke-blackened factories, towering slag heaps and fiery furnaces dominated their lives. From the deep docks and towering cranes of the Tyneside shipyards to the mills and chimneys of Lancashire and beyond, Working Lives takes us right to the heart of those industrial centres through the words of those who were there. Drawn together from hundreds of hours of first-hand interviews, Working Lives is a unique collection of oral testimonies from workers whose stories might not otherwise have been told: mill girls who risked life and limb in dusty, noisy weaving sheds; steel workers who wrestled sheets of white-hot metal in the blistering heat of the foundries; and miners who hewed coal by hand on filthy, cramped, claustrophobic coalfaces. Local industries shaped these workers’ entire lives but also gave them a sense of pride, identity and belonging. As they look back on the dangers and hardships of their jobs, and the place of industry in their close-knit communities, these fascinating voices paint a vivid and moving portrait of working life in Britain not to be forgotten.
This work constitutes the largest and most comprehensive research guide ever published about Benjamin Britten. Entries survey the most significant published materials relating to the composer, including bibliographies, catalogs, letters and documents, conference reports, biographies, and studies of Britten's music.
A witty and addictively readable day-by-day literary companion. At once a love letter to literature and a charming guide to the books most worth reading, A Reader's Book of Days features bite-size accounts of events in the lives of great authors for every day of the year. Here is Marcel Proust starting In Search of Lost Time and Virginia Woolf scribbling in the margin of her own writing, "Is it nonsense, or is it brilliance?" Fictional events that take place within beloved books are also included: the birth of Harry Potter’s enemy Draco Malfoy, the blood-soaked prom in Stephen King’s Carrie. A Reader's Book of Days is filled with memorable and surprising tales from the lives and works of Martin Amis, Jane Austen, James Baldwin, Roberto Bolano, the Brontë sisters, Junot Díaz, Philip K. Dick, Charles Dickens, Joan Didion, F. Scott Fitzgerald, John Keats, Hilary Mantel, Haruki Murakami, Flannery O’Connor, Orhan Pamuk, George Plimpton, Marilynne Robinson, W. G. Sebald, Dr. Seuss, Zadie Smith, Susan Sontag, Hunter S. Thompson, Leo Tolstoy, David Foster Wallace, and many more. The book also notes the days on which famous authors were born and died; it includes lists of recommended reading for every month of the year as well as snippets from book reviews as they appeared across literary history; and throughout there are wry illustrations by acclaimed artist Joanna Neborsky. Brimming with nearly 2,000 stories, A Reader's Book of Days will have readers of every stripe reaching for their favorite books and discovering new ones.