“Buckler's excellent command of the relevant ethnographic and theoretical literature is enlivened by a personal perspective and numerous excerpts from her field notes. An important, exemplary work of applied anthropology for social scientists interested in ethnicity and interethnic relations, and a must read for administrators dealing with multiethnic situations. It is among the very best of the many monographs now being produced on Romany communities in Britain. Essential.”• Choice
“…anthropologists will come, increasingly, to locate themselves...outside the universities. And if this absorbing book is anything to go by, then we should look forward to the future with confidence.”• JRAI
“…an important and original contribution to the social anthropology of Gypsies/Romanies as a growing field of ethnographic research.”• Anthropological Notebooks
Anthropologists who are employed to change the worlds they are researching find themselves in a potentially contradictory position. Combining the various roles and expectations involved in working with Gypsies and local government at the same time as conducting anthropological research, provides the overall perspective of this study. It is an unusual and effective balance of insightful ethnography and anthropological theory with the perspective of someone employed to carry out applied work. An effective and creative use of metaphor structures the entire work and allows complex ideas to be conveyed in an accessible way. Drawing upon traditional anthropological approaches such as kinship and story telling and engaging with the works of major social theorists such as Weber, Bourdieu and Foucault as well as the work of contemporary anthropologists, this work demonstrates the use of anthropology in understanding changing situations and in deciding how best to manage such situations.
Sarah (Sal) Buckler worked for many years in the arts and urban regeneration until an abiding interest in cross-cultural communication led her to study anthropology. She is currently employed in local government research and is Honorary Research Associate at Durham's Department of Anthropology.