In praise of ethnography: Towards a rich understanding of crime and deviance
Kriminologisches Journal , Volume 45 - Issue 2 p. 144- 159
In this article I show how ethnography can be used to get a rich understanding of crime and deviance. I will highlight the advantages of ethnography for criminology by referring to the work of others and by using detailed examples of the 'back-stage' experience of my own fieldwork among the soccer-hooligans of Ajax, Amsterdam. This means that my research experience is not rewritten to fit the ideal front-stage of the supposedly "objective" researcher; but instead that this article explicitly describes the embodied, emotional and personal experiences of doing ethnography. Here I will show that the advantages of ethnography for criminology are inherently related to several qualities of this methodological approach: 1. continued physical access, 2. unanticipated situations, 3. thick contextual information, 4. natural triangulation and 5. The embodied research-experience.