Sebastian MohrRolf Lindner

Learning to get involved with people

A conversation with Rolf Lindner about the ethnographer’s fear of the field


Buy article


Rolf Lindner argues in his essay Die Angst des Forschers vor dem Feld from 1981, that the ethnographer’s first meeting with the field might cause anxieties that, when reflected upon as part of ethnographic knowledge production, might hold important insights into the field itself, on the one hand, and into ethnography’s implicit normative frameworks, on the other. In this interview, Rolf Lindner talks, 34 years on, about how the essay came about, how it connected to and intervened in dominant academic discourses at the time, and what the essay’s legacy is regarding methodical and methodological teaching in contemporary cultural anthropology.

embodiment, emotions, ethnography, fieldwork, participant observation, methodology