A type of research
in which a sociologist does not merely observe the activites being studied, but takes an active part in them. The benefit
is the insight one gains by becoming an "insider
"; the disadvantage
s include a possible loss of persepctive
on the subject as well as the danger of physical
For example, my sociology professor in college once related the story of a husband and wife team who were conducting a study of prostitution. Their method? She turned tricks, and he was her pimp.