NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1064069
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 33
ISSN: ISSN-1935-3308
Historical Contributions of Lewis, Willis, and Ogbu to American Ethnographic Research
Watras, Joseph
Journal of Ethnographic & Qualitative Research, v9 n1 p55-67 2014
This article describes the work of Oscar Lewis, Paul Willis, and John U. Ogbu, who used the concept of culture to explain the difficulties some children had in schools. Although Lewis, Willis, and Ogbu were well trained as ethnographers and their work influenced educators, critics complained that their explanations did not fit their evidence. The problems derived from what is called a group fallacy because the researchers pointed to a group to explain the behavior of individuals. This does not mean the studies were worthless. They gave examples of people's attitudes in the same way that novelists portray characters. This essay is important to practicing ethnographers because it suggests how the concept of culture can limit the value of their research and how they can correct this possible flaw.
Cedarville University. 251 North Main Street, Cedarville, OH 45314. Tel: 937-766-3242; Fax: 937-766-7971; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A