Children’s everyday lives (re)constructed as variable sets of field bodies: Revisiting the exotic remote island – a case study

How do you study everyday life? Everyday life happens. It is solid and liquid, embedded and changeable. The article is based on fieldwork I conducted on an isolated island, where I was interested in how children play, interact with each other and use social media. I brought my son, a camcorder and seven small digital cameras with me, which I distributed to the children on the island. Using the visual and material perspective allows the researcher to incorporate slowness, details and minimal space in her work. And it makes it possible to work with different types of performative practices, where inter-methodic (person and method) as well as inter-material (person and materiality/surroundings) aspects are brought into play, and the patterns and dynamics of the social and cultural landscapes can be reconfigured. This article scrutinizes how the researcher (me) works with variable sets of «field bodies», how different kinds of knowledge are produced and constructed and how this kind of shared anthropology can open up parts of everyday life. It also shows how an ’exotic’ remote island can be understood as a privileged perspective on childscape and often forgotten aspects in everyday life.

Keywords: everyday life, children, childscape, island, visual anthropology, methodology, «field-bodies», researcher positions