Qualitative Methods in Military Studies

Research Experiences and Challenges

Edited by Helena Carreiras, Celso Castro

© 2013 – Routledge

208 pages

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pub: 2014-05-19
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About the Book

This book examines the methodology of qualitative research in military studies.

Since the end of the Cold War, the number of studies on military and society has grown substantially in substance, size and impact. However, only a tiny part of this bibliography deals in depth with the research methods used, especially in relation to qualitative methods. The data that form the basis of the researchers’ analyses are often presented as if they were immediately available, rather than as a product of interaction between the researcher and those who participated in the research.

Comprising essays by international scholars, the volume discusses the methodological questions raised by the use of qualitative research methodology in military settings. On the one hand, it focuses on the specificity of the military as a social context for research: the authors single out and discuss the particular field effects produced by institutional arrangements, norms and practices of the military. On the other, the authors proceed in an empirical manner: all methodological questions are addressed with regard to concrete situations of field research.

This book will be of much interest to students of military studies, research methods, sociology, anthropology, war and conflict studies and security studies in general.

Table of Contents

Introduction, Celso Castro & Helena Carreiras 1. Anthropological Methods and the Study of the Military: the Brazilian Experience, Celso Castro 2. Insider Anthropology: Theoretical and Empirical Issues for the Researcher, Charles Kirke 3. Studying Cross-Cultural Competence in the Military. Methodological Considerations of Applied Contract Research for the German Armed Forces, Phil C. Langer & Carsten Pietsch 4. Evolving Experiences. Auto-Ethnography and Military Sociology: A South African Immersion, Ian Liebenberg 5. Side effects of the Chain of Command on Anthropological Research: the Brazilian Army, Piero C. Leirner 6. Negotiating Access to an Argentinean Military Institution in Democratic Times: Difficulties and Challenges, Alejandra Navarro 7. Research Relations in Military Settings: How does Gender Matter?, Helena Carreiras & Ana Alexandre 8. Inside the Military Organization: Experience of Researching the Slovenian Armed Forces, Janja Vuga & Jelena Juvan 9. Studying the Military in a Comparative Perspective: Methodological Challenges and Issues. The example of French and German Officers in European Defense and Security Policy, Delphine Deschaux-Beaume 10. Interviewing a Group: a Social Dramatic Art. Few Remarks on Dynamics and Stakes of Military Groups, Said Haddad 11. Research on Latin America’s Soldiers: Generals, Sergeants, and Guerrilla Comandantes, Dirk Kruijt Conclusion, Celso Castro & Helena Carreiras

About the Editors

Helena Carreiras is professor at ISCTE-University Institute of Lisbon and senior researcher at CIES-IUL. She was deputy director of the Portuguese National Defence Institute between 2010 and 2012, and holds a PhD in Social & Political Sciences from the European University Institute. She is the author of Gender and the Military (Routledge, 2006).

Celso Castro is professor and current director of CPDOC (The School of Social Sciences and History) at Getulio Vargas Foundation (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil). He has a PhD in Social Anthropology and is the author of several books on the military.

About the Series

Cass Military Studies

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / Military / General
HISTORY / Latin America / South America
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Methodology