Anarchist Studies Network

A PSA Specialist Group for the Study of Anarchism.


ASN members secure £250k research grant from the ESRC. See here

Rowman & Littlefield Int publish two book series by ASN members Saul Newman and Ruth Kinna

Anarchist Methodologies

Ansart, Pierre Sociologie de Proudhon

Coleman, Lara Montesinos and Bassi, Serena (2011) "Militant manhood revisited: a note on methods and madness", in International Feminist Journal of Politics 13:2, 203-210

Graeber, David (2010) Direct Action: An Ethnography Edinburgh/Oakland: AK Press.

Greenway, Judy. 2008. "Desire, delight, regret: discovering Elizabeth Gibson", Qualitative Research: 8, pp 317-324. www -> ABSTRACT My research into the life of a relative, poet and feminist Elizabeth Gibson, problematizes the boundaries and interrelationships between ‘academic’ and ‘family’ histories, narratives and identities. The desire for, and impossibilities of, control over the components of research and the stories that can be produced from it are discussed. The interrelated narratives of the research into Gibson, my experiences of researching my own family, and the structuring of the material into an academic paper, are analysed and combined to argue that the production and presentation of narratives is itself a form of methodology. The creative juxtaposition of narratives can generate a positive methodological anarchism that relinquishes control and challenges boundaries and hierarchies.

Heckert, Jamie (2010) "Intimacy with Strangers/Intimacy with Self: Queer Experiences of Social Research." In K. Browne and C. Nash (eds.) Queering Methods and Methodologies: Intersecting Queer Theories and Social Science Research. Farnham: Ashgate. www

Juris, Jeffrey (2007) "Practicing Militant Ethnography with the Movement for Global Resistance (MRG) in Barcelona", in Stevphen Shukaitis and David Graeber, eds. Constituent Imagination: Militant Investigation, Collective Theorization, Edinburgh/Oakland, Calif.: AK Press. Pp. 164-176.

Juris, Jeffrey (2008) Networking Futures Durham, NC: Duke University Press.

Kaufmann, Judy. (2005). Autotheory: An autoethnographic reading of Foucault. Qualitative Inquiry 11(4), 576-587. www --> ABSTRACT In this article, the author plays with the dialectical relationship between theory and autobiography. Interrupting her theoretical interpretation of Foucault’s understanding of the body and subject with autoethnographic pieces that function as illustrations and/or counterpoints to her summary of his theories, the author suggests there is no "right" understanding and use of theory but only autotheoretical interpretations.

Pallister-Wilkins, Polly "Building a new theory in the shell of the old: how anarchism offers an alternative to the limits of social movement theory" www

Plows, Alexandra (2008) "Social Movements and Ethnographic Methodologies: An Analysis Using Case Study Examples" Sociology Compass 2(5), 1523–1538. --> ABSTRACT This paper defines and discusses the viability and applicability of specific ethnographic methods for the study and theorising of social movements and related social mobilisation. Ethnographic methods are shown to be one tool in a box of available methods, but are perhaps especially suited for the in-depth study of social movements and social networks. Pros and cons of such methods are identified, using examples drawn from an ethnographic narrative comprising over a decade of research; ethnography of UK environmental direct activists, and more recent ethnography of UK publics engaging with human genetic technologies. Ethnography enables developments in latent social interactions to be identified in the field, providing data sources that inform social analysis and the development of theoretical stakes. This ethnographic narrative has contributed to the theorising of complexity in movement collective identity and complex social mobilisation patterns; namely the theorising of social movement. Findings can be disseminated to a range of stakeholders, including the research participants. Thus, ethnography can be both a method for studying social movements and a means of ‘upstream’ public engagement, understanding what is happening at the grassroots, with the aim of enabling capacity building between all actors in the research process. This methodological rationale is defined as ‘action research’.

Purkis, Jonathan (2004) "Towards an Anarchist Sociology," in In J Purkis and J Bowen (eds) Changing Anarchism: Anarchist Theory and Practice in a Global Age, Manchester: Manchester University Press.