Esta Muy Duro
By: Charlene Shovic September 1, 2010
“What you really need to ask yourself is, ‘Why am I doing this?’”
Angela was looking straight in my eyes, and didn’t blink for the next seven long seconds.
I didn’t have an answer for her.
Who was I – some young, naive American, coming in to the small town of San Andres with broken Spanish, anxious to hear what it’s like to have a husband go to the U.S. for work? What was I going to do with the information she was sharing with me, how it was to finally hear from her brother who had been gone for 34 days after leaving Guatemala to cross by foot the Mexico-Arizona border? Was I just going to write it all up for a grade on my Ethnographic Field School paper? What were my ethical responsibilities as a researcher? As an anthropologist? As someone entrusted with the stories told me?