Ethnography, demography and service-learning: Situating lynwood park

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3 Scopus citations


This paper reports the results of a one-year service-learning project that excited students about sociology, and created useful analytic tools for a modest-income African American community. In the course of deepening our understanding of one neighborhood ãƒÆ’ã‚¢ãƒÂ¢ã¢â‚¬Å¡ã‚¬ãƒÂ¢ã¢â€šÂ¬ã‚Â� including collecting extant demographic data, conducting surveys and interviews, site visits, and simply ãƒÆ’ã‚¢ãƒÂ¢ã¢â‚¬Å¡ã‚¬ãƒâ€¦ã¢â‚¬Å“hanging out,ãƒÆ’ã‚¢ãƒÂ¢ã¢â‚¬Å¡ã‚¬ãƒâ€šã‚Â� ãƒÆ’ã‚¢ãƒÂ¢ã¢â‚¬Å¡ã‚¬ãƒÂ¢ã¢â€šÂ¬ã‚Â� it becomes possible to demonstrate how using formal demography and community ethnography together provide better understandings of the processes of social stratifi- cation, segregation, and gentrifi cation than would be possible using only one of the methodological orientations. The paper begins with an introduction to theoretical and didactic challenges, proceeds to describing Lynwood Park itself using insights derived from qualitative evidence, and then describes our eclectic means of investigating the community. The second half of the paper situates Lynwood Park demographically and ethnographically in terms of the larger Atlanta community, and then in increasingly smaller and more socially meaningful units. Once we focus the demographic lens as much as possible, we must again rely on qualitative information to probe the multiple meanings of Lynwood Park. The paper closes with recommendations about how the people of Lynwood Park can use the data, and suggests how these techniques can be implemented theoretically and practically in sociology as a whole.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)217-233
Number of pages17
JournalCritical Sociology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science


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