Cultivating Knowledge? Ethnography and Gardening

Degnen, Cathrine (2010) Cultivating Knowledge? Ethnography and Gardening. [Video] (Unpublished)

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Visit the Realities website (link below) for a recording (audio plus images) of this presentation, given at Methods in Dialogue: Researching Nature.

In 2003-2004 genetically modified food and crops in Britain were the centre of media attention and the topic of a government sponsored public debate. By good fortune, this was also when I was conducting ethnographic fieldwork on public understandings of GM in the north of England.

Rather than consult with the usual suspects on the topic (activists, scientists, food industry employees and other various ‘experts’), I wished to base my research in sites where everyday knowledge and expertise on growing food and plants were embedded. Towards this end, I began working in part with gardeners.

In this paper, I will explore how this approach to researching people’s relationships with and ideas about nature played out when put into practice. I will also explore some of the findings which point towards cultural notions of overlapping forms of sociality between humans and plants that in turn cast new light on British debates over GM.

Item Type: Video
Subjects: 4. Qualitative Data Handling and Data Analysis > 4.23 Qualitative Approaches (other)
Depositing User: Realities user
Date Deposited: 21 May 2010 14:10
Last Modified: 14 Jul 2021 13:51

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