Original Research

Weerstand teen teksgebonde navorsing: ’n bydrae tot ’n omgekeerde benadering tot kultuurstudie

K.G. Tomaselli, N. Oets
Literator | Vol 25, No 2 | a258 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/lit.v25i2.258 | © 2004 K.G. Tomaselli, N. Oets | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 31 July 2004 | Published: 31 July 2004

About the author(s)

K.G. Tomaselli, Kultuur-, Kommunikasie- en Mediastudies, Universiteit van Natal, Durban, South Africa
N. Oets, Kultuur-, Kommunikasie- en Mediastudies, Universiteit van Natal, Durban, South Africa

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Resisting text-bound research: Towards a reversed approach to cultural studies

In this article an argument is developed for a reversed approach of cultural studies in discussing problems regarding fieldwork, academic access and accountability. We also argue for an empirical space in cultural studies, for a greater acknowledgement of fieldwork done by Third-World scholars vis-á-vis seminal theory development in the Western world. The article discusses relationships between observers and the observed in terms of dependency, inclusions/exclusions, and borders and othering. We reflexively analyse tensions and contradictions set in motion by the writing of articles on observer-observed relationships within both the San communities themselves and among researchers and development and other agencies working in one of these areas. Issues addressed relate to the ownership of information, the relationship between the local/particular and the national/general policy, and on how to ensure informal discussions around the campfire as well as involvement of, and general access to the written product by a-literate and non-English-speaking communities.

Methodologically this article builds on two earlier studies, based on six years of fieldwork research in the Kalahari among three San communities in Namibia, Botswana and the Northern Cape.


A Reversed Approach Of Cultural Studies; Relationship Between Observer-Observed; San Communities; Culture; Attitudes; Cooperation; Textualism; Text-Bound Research


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