Fictional Stories in Cultural Anthropological Research: Addressing Identity-related Needs and Problems

By Antonia Loeschner.

Published by The Social Sciences Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The promotion of intercultural co-existence is an urgent task of politics in contemporary globalized society. Social policies can only be successful if they consider the needs, perspectives and problems of the individuals concerned. Therefore, identity issues play a fundamental role. However, these sensitive areas of emotional knowledge are difficult to access. This paper offers insight into the theoretical and methodical foundation of a new cultural anthropological method that makes it possible to assess identity-related needs and problems of socio-cultural groups through the analysis of their fictional stories. The method focuses on groups that are affected by experiences of change like migration and colonization. The paper explains why and how it is possible to use fictional stories as a cultural anthropological source despite their fictional character. The method has been developed combining theories from the areas of cultural anthropology, literary studies, psychology and the social sciences. The findings from the analysis will supply a new basis for approaching societal issues in the context of interdisciplinary cooperation and involving the authors as representatives of the socio-cultural groups in question.

Keywords: Social Policy, Identity, Emotion, Culture, Social Problems, Migration, Integration, Colonization, Globalization, Society, Psychology, Politics, Social Sciences, Cultural Anthropology

International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, Volume 5, Issue 10, pp.221-232. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 656.980KB).

Dr. Antonia Loeschner

Socio-Cultural Anthropologist, Munich, Germany

Antonia Löschner received her doctorate in socio-cultural anthropology from the Ludwig-Maximilians-University in Munich, Germany in 2010. She developed the method of cultural anthropological analysis of fiction in her dissertation. At present, she is preparing a research project that aims to offer further insight into the integration needs of Turkish Germans and Mexican Americans, in cooperation with the Institute for Migration Research and Intercultural Studies (IMIS) in Osnabrück.

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