Ethnography in a Time of Blurred Genres:

Ruth Behar

Drawing from Francine Prose's Reading Like a Writer (2006), this article offers suggestions for reading ethnographies in a new way: with an eye toward learning how they were written and what literary feats they accomplished. In a time of blurred genres, the line between fiction and nonfiction has become increasingly indistinct and it is no longer so clear where ethnography is to be positioned. It is therefore important to reassess the possibilities and limits of ethnography as a literary genre if we are to understand the idiosyncrasies of its "art."