Ambivalent participation

Sex, power and the anthropologist in Mozambique

    Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review

    Resumé

    Participation in young peoples' sexual cultures in Maputo, Mozambique led to reflections about the field dynamics of power, participation, desire, and discomfort. Structural inequalities of race, gender, and educational status resulted in informants seeing me as a morally righteous person to whom they could not give open accounts about sexual practice. Attempting to overcome these barriers, I participated in excessive nightlife activities, and as a consequence they began viewing me as a more accepting and reliable person. Although breaking down these barriers provided invaluable insight into their sexual culture, it also caused anxiety and troubling desires vis-à-vis informants. I discuss how anthropologists, through fieldwork are transformed from powerful seducers of informants to objects of informants' seduction. This creates dilemmas for the anthropologist whose fieldwork depends on informants' continued participation. I show how negotiating the risks of participation may simultaneously satisfy the desire for knowledge and curb erotic desires.
    OriginalsprogEngelsk
    TidsskriftMedical Anthropology
    Vol/bind31
    Udgave nummer1
    Sider (fra-til)44-60
    ISSN0145-9740
    DOI
    StatusUdgivet - 2012

    Citer dette

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    abstract = "Participation in young peoples' sexual cultures in Maputo, Mozambique led to reflections about the field dynamics of power, participation, desire, and discomfort. Structural inequalities of race, gender, and educational status resulted in informants seeing me as a morally righteous person to whom they could not give open accounts about sexual practice. Attempting to overcome these barriers, I participated in excessive nightlife activities, and as a consequence they began viewing me as a more accepting and reliable person. Although breaking down these barriers provided invaluable insight into their sexual culture, it also caused anxiety and troubling desires vis-{\`a}-vis informants. I discuss how anthropologists, through fieldwork are transformed from powerful seducers of informants to objects of informants' seduction. This creates dilemmas for the anthropologist whose fieldwork depends on informants' continued participation. I show how negotiating the risks of participation may simultaneously satisfy the desire for knowledge and curb erotic desires.",
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    Ambivalent participation : Sex, power and the anthropologist in Mozambique . / Groes-Green, Christian.

    I: Medical Anthropology, Bind 31, Nr. 1, 2012, s. 44-60.

    Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review

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