Saturday, November 6, 2010

Yom Taweel

Every description of fieldwork I've ever read has noted that it's exhausting. For me, it is particularly tiring as it often involves interacting with lots of people, and since I am naturally shy and introverted, this requires a lot of energy.   While drinking my pre-fieldwork cappuccino today, and feeling myself get nervous, I thought Self, why on earth did you pick a research method that you knew would be so difficult for you? It's not like there weren't other options . . .

As the caffeine kicked in, it occurred to me that many of the academics I've met who engage in my sort of work are also shy, introverted and somewhat socially awkward (although not all of them, by any means, so don't take this the wrong way).

Which led me to think--do we study people and society because we're not sure how to navigate them ourselves, and this is why they are interesting to research? Do we hope subconsciously that our research understanding will aid our personal understanding? More importantly, does it?

1 comment:

  1. I'm very strongly introverted but currently have a job that demands me to interact with people about 90% of my professional time. For me, it grows less exhausting with practice - I've learned how to prepare and feel comfortable and learn in a busy, loud environment. But it's an interesting theory you have and I will note that I often crash at the end of a particularly meeting-filled day, unable to say much more than hello to the guy who delivers my pizza.