Skip to main content
There Are Survivors: Telling a Story of Sudden Death
The Sociological Quarterly (1993)
  • Carolyn S Ellis, University of South Florida

This article is a personal narrative of a family drama enacted in the aftermath of my brother's death in an airplane crash. “True” stories such as this fit in the space between fiction and social science, joining ethnographic and literary writing, and autobiographical and sociological understanding. My goal is to reposition readers vis a vis authors of texts of social science by acknowledging potential for optional readings and encouraging readers to “experience an experience” that can reveal not only how it was for me, but how it could be or once was for them. This experimental form permits researchers and readers to acknowledge and give voice to their own emotional experiences and encourages ethnographic subjects (co-authors) to reclaim and write their own lives.

  • Autoethnography,
  • Ethnography,
  • Loss,
  • Grief,
  • Autobiography,
  • Narrative,
  • Death
Publication Date
Citation Information
Carolyn S Ellis. "There Are Survivors: Telling a Story of Sudden Death" The Sociological Quarterly Vol. 34 Iss. 4 (1993)
Available at: