Volume 26, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 1385-1535
  • E-ISSN: 1875-7324



This essay is the first part of a reaction to Beuving’s discussion on evidence and truth in ethnography (KWALON 74). Gigengack stresses that ethnography is inferential and involves interpretation work. Whereas social scientists may shy away from “truth,” and prefer “reality,” philosophies of truth illuminate empirical ethnography. Taking the Goffman/Mead controversies as histories of truth, Gigengack discusses created, relative, powerful, and holistic truths on the basis of these ethnographies. It brings Gigengack to a critique of functionalist-empiricist ethnography, and to point out the subjectivist and objectivist fallacies in the ethnographic practice of making truths through social facts.


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