Analysis Of The Human Instrument By Duneier

2152 Words 9 Pages
Summary: In 1992, Duneier delved into an ethnographic study of the streets of Greenwich Village, centering on the men and women who live, and work there. Duneier yearned to develop insight on “how their world works and how they see it” (p. 10) and how “these persons live in a moral order” (p. 9). Thus, over seven years he dedicated his time and efforts to directly participating alongside the men and women, all the while meticulously observing, questioning and excavating information and narratives. He extends his focus outwards as well, to larger social structures, tensions and constraints at play, giving a truly all-encompassing view of Sixth Avenue. In his immersion with the vendors, and the sidewalk life, Duneier was able to better understand that the seemingly mundane, and often looked down upon behaviors and interactions in which the vendors engage, serve an important purpose. Duneier postulates that this community has been mistakenly portrayed as units of dysfunction, standing in the way of social order, when Duneier’s findings from his research points to the contrary.
Duneier succeeded in developing a rich, nuanced understanding of how
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Duneier conceded to readers that being “a social scientist does not preclude having strong opinions, values, or feelings (Duneier, 1999, p. 78). To Duneier “what is most important is that [he] try to help the reader recognize the lens through which the reality is refracted” (Duneier, 1999, p. 14) throughout his accounts of life on the Sidewalk. He accomplishes this by remaining transparent in stating the multiplicity of ways his role on the streets, and his findings, were influenced by his judgments and his quintessential qualities and subjectivities as a researcher and human

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