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Qualitative Sociology

, Volume 22, Issue 1, pp 37–50 | Cite as

The Anthropology of Empty Spaces

  • Jerzy Kociatkiewicz
  • Monika Kostera
Article

Abstract

We would like to tell an anthropologic story about how we see reality and how we feel about it, with no intention to generalize our reflections. Our version of anthropology is intentionally self-reflexive and self-reflective. This text is a narrative study of the feelings of anthropologists out in the field. The anthropologic frame of mind is a certain openness of the mind of the researcher/observer of social reality (Czarniawska-Joerges 1992). On the one hand, it means the openness to new realities and meanings, and on the other, a constant need to problematize, a refusal to take anything for granted, to treat things as obvious and familiar. The researcher makes use of her or his curiosity, the ability to be surprised by what she or he observes, even if it is “just” the everyday world. Our explorations concern an experience of space. It aims at investigating the space not belonging to anyone. While “anthropologically” moving around different organizations, we suddenly realized that we were part of stories of the space we were moving in. Areas of poetic emptiness can be experienced, often in the physical sense, on the boundaries and inside of organizations.

anthropology space feelings stories sensemaking 

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Copyright information

© Human Sciences Press, Inc. 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jerzy Kociatkiewicz
    • 1
  • Monika Kostera
    • 2
  1. 1.Warsaw UniversityWarszawaPoland
  2. 2.Warsaw University and The Academy of Entrepreneurship and ManagementWarszawaPoland

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