Qualitative Sociology

, Volume 12, Issue 2, pp 119–154

Visual ethnography: Using photography in qualitative research

  • Dona Schwartz

DOI: 10.1007/BF00988995

Cite this article as:
Schwartz, D. Qual Sociol (1989) 12: 119. doi:10.1007/BF00988995


This article proposes a new way to use photographs in ethnographic research. The method builds on earlier examinations of the unique properties of photographic articulation, interpretation and use, employing the inherent ambiguities of photographic imagery. Responses to ethnographic photographs of a rural farm community were recorded during group interview sessions and analyzed in relation to additional ethnographic data gathered in order to study sociocultural continuity and change across generations in farm families.

Copyright information

© Human Sciences Press 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dona Schwartz
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Journalism and Mass CommunicationsUniversity of MinnesotaMineapolis