Anthropology, with its deep commitment to fieldwork, has produced, through the dialectics of learning and unlearning, a contradictory self-understanding of the nature of the knowledge it has produced: one that is driven by a search for certainty, on the one hand, and by a desire for surprise, on the other. This article narrates a genealogy of anthropological perspectives that derive from the latter desire, the one that aims to undermine constantly that which is taken for granted. It shows how this perspective-often underappreciated these days in places where anthropological knowledge has been required to legitimate itself on an activist ground-has affected the way in which the author, a Japanese anthropologist, understands his fieldwork experience in Guatemala.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cultural Studies
- Sociology and Political Science
- Arts and Humanities(all)