Anderson, William A.
August 1970
American Sociologist;Aug70, Vol. 5 Issue 3, p236
Academic Journal
The article discusses the experiences of African American researchers vis-á-vis the racial relations in the U.S. It points out that a researcher must be cognizant of the fact that subjects may find salience not only in his role as sociologist but in his other roles, real or attributed. The article further reports on how the field study largely involved interviewing African Americans and organizations regarding their efforts to change social arrangements perceived as working to their disadvantage. It also seeks information, which was sought on a wide variety of group activities including community organizing efforts, public demonstrations, school boycotts, civil disturbances, and voter registration campaigns. The two general types of groups studied are civil rights groups and African American militant group. The racial identity of the black researchers had high salience for the black militant groups, and this played a prominent role in structuring the sociologists' interactions with these groups. Militant groups did generally not hold sociological research, which was seldom differentiated from other types of social research, in high regard because they felt it failed to produce needed social change.


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