The Summer May Have Ended, but the Research Process Continues…

Not that school is back in session, it would be convenient to say that my research has ended and I can simply begin the writing process.  However, anthropological research is an iterative process, and my project continues to evolve.  While I will begin the writing process over the course of the semester, I will also continue to conduct interviews.  In addition, I am going to attend the Guinea Jubilee, a celebration of life and culture in Guinea Neck, at the end of the month.  The fact that this event occurs in September proves the fact that summer research does not always fit nicely into seven weeks.  While much can be accomplished during that time, an anthropologist can never know everything about the community he or she studies.  I am fortunate that Guinea lies close to Williamsburg, allowing me to still meet with community members in person.

Trip to the Virginia Marine Resources Commission

Since I have become increasingly interested in the relationship between regulators and watermen during the course of my project, I attended a meeting of the Virginia Marine Resources Commission (VMRC), the governing body responsible for enacting the fishing regulations that affect the Guinea community (at least the ones that are not federally mandated).  The meeting provided some insight into the process.  I was able to witness a commercial waterman who lives in Guinea speak during the public comments portion of the meeting, as well as experience deliberation on time limits for commercial blue crab fishing, a regulation very pertinent to my topic.  As far as the scientific aspects of fisheries issues are concerned, a VIMS scientist gave his annual report on submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) in the Chesapeake Bay.  I found his discussion of the VMRC’s efforts to work with haul seiners who work near an SAV sanctuary in the Bay to come up with an agreement to both preserve the plants and the watermen’s ability to fish in that area very enlightening.

Summer 2010 Summary: Vietnam

I’ve been back from Vietnam for a month now. I vowed not to eat any Vietnamese food for at least a month, so tomorrow you’ll be able to find me at Saigon Pearl down on Richmond Road. I’ll be curled up to a bowl of pho and some fresh cha gio, sipping on an iced coffee with condensed milk. I’ll be there trying to relive the best summer of my life. I’m only a month removed from those dirty, bustling streets and already I’m ready to go back.

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