The process of learning qualitative research has altered dramatically and this Handbook explores the growth, change, and complexity within the topic and looks back over its history to assess the current state of the art, and indicate possible future directions. Moving beyond textbook rehearsals of standard issues, the book examines key methodological debates and conflicts, approaching them in a critical, discursive manner.
I still recall with great vividness my introduction to the world of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD). After months of waiting and negotiation, I finally gained permission to do extensive fieldwork in one LAPD patrol division. On a warm August evening, I entered the station house of the Wilshire Division, located in the center of the city. I identified myself to the officer working the front desk, and sat to wait on a hard wooden bench. After a few minutes, a burly police sergeant entered the lobby from a side door. He introduced himself, and then escorted me through the back of the station to his awaiting patrol car in the rear parking lot. As we exited the lot to begin my first ...