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Studying Elites Using Qualitative Methods
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Studying Elites Using Qualitative Methods

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Volume: 175

August 1995 | 210 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Few social researchers study elites because elites, by their nature, are very difficult to access. The contributors to this volume provide valuable insights on how researchers can successfully penetrate elite settings. As the authors reflect on their experiences, they provide constructive advice as well as cautionary tales about how they learned to maneuver and become accepted in a world that is often closed to them. This book's coverage includes three broad research domains: business elites, professional elites, and community and political elites. Although the studies focus on qualitative methodology, even researchers who emphasize more quantitative methods will benefit from this volume's thoughtful observations on how researchers gather data, construct interview strategies, write about their subjects, and experience the research process. A wide range of researchers in organizational studies, sociology, political science, and many other fields will find this volume to be an important guide to the many subtle and elusive features of conducting successful research with these groups.

Rosanna Hertz and Jonathan B Imber
Introduction
 
PART ONE: BUSINESS ELITES
Robert J Thomas
Interviewing Important People in Big Companies
Michael Useem
Reaching Corporate Executives
Peter Cleary Yeager and Kathy E Kram
Fielding Hot Topics in Cool Settings
The Study of Corporate Ethics  
John P Workman Jr
Using Electronic Media to Support Fieldwork in a Corporate Setting
Paul M Hirsch
Tales from the Field
Learning from Researchers' Accounts  
 
PART TWO: PROFESSIONAL ELITES
Joshua Gamson
Stopping the Spin and Becoming a Prop
Fieldwork on Hollywood Elites  
Jennifer L Pierce
Reflections on Fieldwork in a Complex Organization
Lawyers, Ethnographic Authority, and Lethal Weapons  
Alan Aldridge
Negotiating Status
Social Scientists and Anglican Clergy  
Howard S Becker
How I Learned What a Crock Was
 
PART THREE: COMMUNITY AND POLITICAL ELITES
Susan A Ostrander
`Surely You're Not in This Just to Be Helpful'
Access, Rapport, and Interviews in Three Studies of Elites  
Albert Hunter
Local Knowledge and Local Power
Notes on the Ethnography of Local Community Elites  
Hanna Herzog
Research as a Communication Act
A Study on Israeli Women in Local Politics  
Hugh Gusterson
Exploding Anthropology's Canon in the World of the Bomb
Ethnographic Writing on Militarism  

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