Teaching Culture: Ethnographies for the Classroom
Series Editor: John Barker, University of British Columbia
The Teaching Culture series is an essential resource for instructors searching for ethnographic case studies that are contemporary, engaging, provocative, and created specifically with undergraduate students in mind. Written with clarity and personal warmth, books in the series introduce students to the core methods and orienting frameworks of ethnographic research and provide a compelling entry point to some of the most urgent issues faced by people around the globe today.
- Audience: Our goal with the series is to produce exciting and accessible ethnographies that draw upon original research and engage with important issues in anthropology in ways that appeal to undergraduate students with no prior exposure to the discipline. While books in the series are also appropriate for specialized upper-year courses, writing for introductory students requires anticipating the knowledge, experience, and motivations that attract students into anthropology in the first place.
- Format/Organization: While accessibility is an important criterion, so too is the format/organization of the book. Anticipating how the proposed book might work in introductory courses of varying sizes and thematic emphases entails creative experimentation with the arrangement of chapters and data. Think about ways that you might fit your proposed book into your own introductory courses. Perhaps you might organize the chapters to follow a more general sequence of topics, focus upon a particular key segment, and/or build around a story arc or theme that recurs throughout the semester or quarter.
- Length: Think short, then go shorter. We are looking for manuscripts in the 40,000-50,000 word range, resulting in a published book of 125-150 pages. This makes the readings manageable to students and easier for instructors to integrate into their teaching.
- Writing Style/Tone: Ethnographies in this series employ a personal narrative voice while privileging ethnographic data, characters, and narrative over exposition of theory and trendy jargon. Our authors don’t “write down” to students, but create works that engage their imaginations and intellects—books that teach, through example, the fascinating and important contributions anthropologists make to the exploration of human experience.
- Extending the Text: Ethnographies in this series may also integrate various media to support and extend their impact and usefulness as pedagogical tools. While we aim for books that can act as stand-alone publications, thinking about the role of photographs, films, video, social media, and other supplements is important, and can lend further creative thinking about how to use ethnography as a teaching tool.