Special Issue ‘Fieldwork in Religion: Bodily Experience and Ethnographic Knowledge’
JSRE Vol. 2 (2016)
Edited by Emily Pierini and Alberto Groisman
Introduction. Fieldwork in Religion: Bodily Experience and Ethnographic Knowledge
Emily Pierini and Alberto Groisman
Full Participation and Ethnographic Reflexivity. An Afro-Brazialian Case Study
Embodied Encounters: Ethnographic Knowledge, Emotions and the Senses in the Vale do Amanhecer’s Spirit Mediumship
Daime Religions, Mediumship and Religious Agency: Health and the Fluency of Social Relations
Studying the Body in Rastafari Rituals: Spirituality, Embodiment and Ethnographic Knowledge
Spirits, Spies and Lies in Havana: Unwitting and Paranoid Entanglements between the Ethnographer and the Field
Diana Espirito Santo
Immersion in Experiencing the Sacred: Insights into the Ethnography of Religion
This Special Issue examines the construction of ethnographic knowledge in researching among participants of religious and spiritual groups through the lenses of bodily experience. Articles discuss the methodological implications of engaging the scholarly body in the field and the ways in which to convey these experiences through ethnography, by addressing the empirical, ethical, epistemological, relational, political and analytical implications of this significant aspect of fieldwork. Authors are particularly concerned with religious and spiritual groups whose practices imply the use of techniques, resources, plants, substances and other strategies used in religious contexts to modify the states of consciousness. They ask specifically how does the researcher’s experience in researching among these groups inform the production of ethnographic knowledge? In which way does it redefine our analytical categories, and even the way we approach the experiences of participants in these groups? Up to which extent do our interlocutors expect us to know about their experiences and practices? Assessing critically their own experiences and their implications, they raise issues associated with contemporary debates around concepts of ‘knowledge’ and ‘belief’, ‘body’, ‘self’ and ‘personhood’, ‘health’ and ‘illness’ in religious contexts.
JSRE Open Access – Online – Peer-Reviewed.