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By Thaddeus Muller

The papers during this quantity have been offered in on the 3rd convention of the ecu Society for the research of Symbolic interplay (SSSI). The subject matter of the 2012 convention used to be 'Conflict, Cooperation and Transformation in daily Life.' The fifteen papers awarded throughout this quantity and quantity forty five disguise a various variety of issues, that are divided into major different types: 'Reflections on tools' and 'Conflict and Cooperation', this quantity makes a speciality of the previous. The valuable factor of the 1st 4 papers is how we navigate our emotional, analytical and political selves within the social worlds that we learn. How will we relate to these we discover and interview? How will we care for problems with strength, agony and politics? the next 3 papers supply a severe research of Geertz' 'Thick Description', views on weight problems in smooth society and an research of the connection among cops and authorized marijuana espresso store vendors in Rotterdam. Contributing authors to this quantity and the subsequent come from Belgium, Canada, Sweden, the U.S., The Netherlands and Germany, suggesting the thriving variety of eu SSSI when it comes to its study subject matters and techniques.

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As for now, I have embarked on another lengthy research trip to the contested city of Jerusalem. From my neighborhood I hear the mosques calling to prayers, watch the children playing on playgrounds, see the West Bank Wall from the local supermarket, and observe the armed security guards playing computer games on their IPhones whilst guarding fenced-in apartment complexes. To be here has become not just a choice, but also a need, a longing, a calling, and a jinx, not least because I have been “captured” by the politics, intricacies, and complexities of IsraelÀPalestine, and impelled by the potential of the social sciences to further peace and reconciliation in the region.

Such local connections were imperative in an environment of mistrust that is fueled by the IsraeliPalestinian conflict. Collaborative research practices therefore not only address issues of fear and safety, but they can also be decisive for gaining access and building trust. Lastly, many researchers discover Action Research as a result of working with indigenous and marginalized people. , 2003, p. 13). The trademark of such collaborative projects is that they will ultimately not only contribute to the academic enterprise, but they may also be used to support local capacity-building; provide a “history from below”; and challenge undemocratic and oppressive social conditions.

CHRISTINE LEUENBERGER Signifiers of Separation. Source: Kalandia Checkpoint from Jerusalem to Ramallah. Photo taken by the author. Images from New York Times. Source: New York Times Online (2011). This fear has been fueled by media images, political treatises, and by the long culture of conflict and violence in the region. Academic treatises, too, have historically maintained popular perceptions of the otherness of the Arab people. Studies of colonialism caution us that the scientific study of Knowledge-Making and its Politics in Conflict Regions 25 the Arab world in the 19th and 20th centuries has been marked by power inequities between Western powers, their scientists and administrators, and the colonized.

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