Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 24 June 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Ethnographic research is to a great extent a process of language socialization. Like children and other neophytes, ethnographers learn how to use language to participate in the social worlds they are studying. For scholars of language, gender, and sexuality, this ideally entails developing communicative competence as gendered and sexual subjects: we learn how people talk, and don’t talk, about gender and sex. This chapter describes how long-term participant-observation, the core ethnographic research method, allowed the author to come to a (partial) appreciation of the language and subjectivities articulated by Hausa-speaking men in northern Nigeria, who saw themselves as “feminine” and/or enjoyed sex with other men. Using examples of miscommunication that occurred at different stages of fieldwork, the chapter illustrates how the time and attention required for ethnographic research can contribute to nuanced understandings of language, gender, and sexuality in particular cultural contexts.

Keywords: ethnography, method, socialization, subjectivities, communicative competence, participant-observation, miscommunication

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.