About the Project

This website was created as part of a Bachelor thesis within the fields of Popular Culture and Social Anthropology at the University of Zurich, Switzerland, and is authored by Selina Maria Reusser and Christian S. Tröndle. Based on fieldwork conducted in 2015 - during a four-week stay at Olala Farms in North San Juan, California, USA - this website is the result of experimenting with alternative ways of publishing and communicating anthropological insights in form of audio-visual data and non-linear text.

 

This part of the website provides background information about the creation of this hypermedia project. This includes a personalized and reflexive account of how the idea of the project was developed, adjusted, and implemented. A detailed recollection of the entire research process is available below in form of a PDF file, containing the preparation phase before conducting the fieldwork (pre-production), a report of the actual fieldwork conducted (production), and the evaluation of the acquired data (post-production). An abstract of this recollection can be found below.

 

The subcategory ‘Methods and Theory’ deals with the idea behind the production of this hypermedia project in a more scientific manner, linking it to theoretical concepts. Apart from elaborating the examined research questions, this subcategory comprises a detailed reflection on, and explanation of the methods used to explore and document everyday life at Olala Farms. A special focus is placed on working with visual research methods such as using film, to either produce a filmic ethnography, or as the main tool for data collection. Because this project addresses a range of topics such as the methods of ethnographic film, focusing on everyday life and on ‘remembering’, just to mention a few, a connection of the latter with the theory of oral history will also be provided. The different methods used during and after conducting our fieldwork will be embedded, supported, and elaborated in the context of theoretical approaches concerning ethnographic research and visual methods.

 

A theoretical justification of why this alternative way of data representation was chosen follows in the separate subcategory ‘Advantages of a multimedia Ethnography’, and elaborates the advantages of combining text, video clips, photographs, and hyperlinks to produce a non-linear ethnography.

 

Acknowledgements’ is reserved for special expressions of thanks to all the people involved in the creation of this project.

 

Abstract of ‘About the Project’ (Download PDF here):

The following text ‘About the Project’ is a description of how we experienced the entire research process. It is purposely written in an informal writing style in order to make it accessible also to people who have no scientific education or training. It is not necessary to read this text in order to make sense of this website, however, it gives you a more detailed and personal insight into our research process.