"Culprits at Home": Pitfalls and Opportunities in Research on Domestic Racists

Christa Markom


Only a few anthropologists have conducted "anthropology at home" on racism and discussed their problems during research afterwards. Working on and with "offenders at home" can lead to challenges within the field and during the analysis. The objective of this article is to discuss my own theoretical and methodological approach as an "anthropologist at home" during my fieldwork with three different speech communities (two of them perceived as racist and one of them as anti-racist). The article will discuss the position of "anthropology at home" within the discipline as well as the approach of my research within this field: doing anthropology at home among majoritized sections of society. Highlighting three examples from my research interviews, I will describe the different problems of distance and proximity, antipathy, sympathy and empathy encountered in the empirical research phase. The article closes with thoughts for the researcher who plans to apply an anthropology-at-home approach with (potential) offenders and the theoretical implications for research in complex societies

URN: http://nbn-resolving.de/urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs130181


racism; anthropology at home; Austria; mainstream society; self-reflexive research

Full Text:


DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17169/fqs-14.1.1820

Copyright (c) 2012 Christa Markom

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.