Studies of human development have taken an ethnographic turn in the 1990s. In this volume, anthropologists, psychologists and sociologists discuss how qualitative methodologies have strengthened the understanding of cognitive, emotional and behavioural development, and of the difficulties of growing up in contemporary society. Part One, informed by a post-positivist philosophy of science, argues for the validity of ethnographic knowledge. Part Two examines a range of qualitative methods, from participant observation to the hermeneutic elaboration of texts. In Part Three, ethnographic methods are applied to issues of human development across the life span and to social problems including poverty, racial and ethnic marginality, and crime. Restoring ethnographic methods to a central place in social inquiry, the 22 essays in this text should interest everyone concerned with the epistemological problems of context, meaning and subjectivity in the behavioural sciences.