The term "ethnography"
stems etymologically from the Greek "ethnos" - a people
and "grápho" - describe. To describe a people.
How simple but yet complex!
The 19th Century saw the western
world experience a chain of events and accomplishments in almost
every sphere of human endeavour. It was an era wherein the thirst
for the gleaning and deepening of knowledge was apparent in all
its intellectual circles. The controversial book by Charles Darwin,
"The Origin of the Species", published in 1859, amongst
others by authors such as Letorneau, broached a vast range of
evergreen issues: namely, the existential whys and wherefores,
and served as an incentive to a great number of researchers who,
in time, split up the fields of study into disciplines such as
Ethnography, Sociology, Demographics, all stemming from the matrix
of History and Archaeology.
These would once again reunite
in the holism of Transdisciplinarity in the 20th Century in the
70's when Ethnography became socio-cultural anthropology.
Ethnography's main objective is
to trace the passing of the individual in the ever changing contexts
of micro social structures which harbour within Man's sociological
behavioural patterns, the broader concepts of the ethnic group,
region, people, and lastly, the nation. Inspired by the German
schools of thought, the first Portuguese ethnologists began the
gigantic task of recording for posterity the enormous content
of popular regional cultures, in their search for a Portuguese
national identity. Portuguese ethnography owes much to the renowned
group "Geração de 70" (The 70's Generation),
which included such illustrious names from the Portuguese literary
world as Teofilo Braga, Adolfo Coelho, Oliveira Martins, Leite
Vasconcelos, among others.
has its roots in popular culture, it is accessible to anyone!
And as such, we look forward to receiving your valuable contribution!