In the light of Bion’s theory, my assumption was that no relationship could be uncontaminated by primitive impulses. A teacher-pupil relationship is no exception (French, 1997). Not only does the teacher-pupil relationship consciously behave towards each other in a certain way, they also continually transfer earlier mental states to current relationships. The teachers’ everyday life is thus characterised by emotionally charged situations and experiences that do not always allow for thought. In order to understand this, I need what Bion (1962/1991, p. 86), calls a “binocular vision.” The term refers to the conscious and unconscious dimensions of experience produced simultaneously “as if they were binocular and therefore capable of correlation and self-regard” (ibid., p. 54). Bion says we cannot have knowledge about ourselves in the sense of knowing ourselves from the immediate experience of ourselves. It means that even if human beings are self- interpretive, the unconscious constitutes a limit to our self-understanding. It is, in other words, not just what the teachers themselves say about the emotional experience that is important—it is also important to capture situations where the teachers avoided “seeing” the emotional and relational side. I was interested in how expressions of emotion were allowed and how they were handled by the individual and in the community of teachers. At the same time, I wanted to grasp the meaning the teachers attributed to their own experiences. My perspective challenges a view of people and organisations as entirely rational and my method had to allow for that.
By examining and interpreting the researcher’s thoughts, reactions, and emotions through these institutional transferences, I was able to develop a psychoanalytically informed researchpractice based on these empirical experiences in the field. I validated these early findings over a 4-year period of empirical studies consisting of a semi-structured questionnaire for 30 social and health care institutions, qualitative interviews with 35 employees, clients, and management representatives, and fieldwork in four social and health care institutions on client and employee democracy. I also observed administration and management meetings in human service institutions for 1.5 years. On this basis, I concluded that development and change processes related to administrative and professional modernisation created anxiety and unrest, defensiveness and ambivalence among employees and management. The management response to the anxiety and defence mechanisms of the staff and institutions often involved rational, instrumental initiatives, such as a 1-day seminar packed with one-way teaching about best practice or written instructions about what the institutions were and were not allowed to do. These initiatives failed to improve the situation—rather the contrary. Instead, management and institutions could have profited by establishing a more reflective and less confrontational work climate with greater emphasis on dialogue, participation, and gradual changes. Analysis of transference between the researcher and the field was thus able to provide insight into organisational and human dynamics and could therefore moderate the prevailing understanding of change and modernisation. Human service employees were generally viewed at that time as reactionary, negative grumblers—and this perception afforded little
The arts program in the long-term care facility offers older adults an opportunity to explore their creativity and potential as artists. A narrative inquiry approach was used with data collected through face-to-face interviews and observations of 10 residents and 3 staff-members involved in the visual arts program. Analysis of the data indicated that the program fostered a sense of community among participants and enhanced their quality of life. The public exhibition of their artwork at a community art gallery validated the merit of their work and gave meaning and purpose to their participation in the program. The study contributes to a broader understanding of the importance of arts programs that foster creativity in later life. This resonates with Tornstam’s (2005) argument that older people living in institutions can experience multiple dimensions of the self through individualized forms of expression.
In thinking about the ethics of accountability in research (whose lives, lands, and bodies are inquired into and what do they get out of it?), the goal of “giving back” to research subjects seems to target a key symptom of a major disease in knowledge production, but not the crippling disease itself. That is the binary between researcher and researched— between knowing inquirer and who or what are considered to be the resources or grounds for knowledge production. This is a fundamental condition of our academic body politic that has only recently been pathologized, and still not by everyone. If what we want is democratic knowledge production that serves not only those who inquire and their institutions, but also those who are inquired upon (and appeals to “knowledge for the good of all” do not cut it), we must soften that boundary erected long ago between those who know versus those from whom the raw materials of knowledge production are extracted. Part of doing this is broadening the conceptual field—thinking more expansively about what counts as risk (ontological harms?) and rightful benefit (institution building and community development?) in the course of building knowledge. It is also helpful to think creatively about the research process as a relationship-building process, as a professional networking process with colleagues (not “subjects”), as an opportunity for conversation and sharing of knowledge, not simply data gathering. Research must then be conceived in less linear ways without necessarily knowable goals at the outset. For the institutions that employ and fund us, we will articulate specific goals but these are only guideposts. A researcher who is willing to learn how to “stand with” a community of subjects is willing to be altered, to revise her stakes in the knowledge to be produced. I should say up front, a multi-disciplinarist or someone eager to challenge disciplinary norms and someone with a varied professional background will see many more opportunities to do this and is more likely to have the skills to carry it off. But then a strict disciplinarist is probably less likely to read this paper in the first place!
In the UK, the terms practice-based and practice-led have been incorporated with different and even contradictory meanings. The educationist Frayling emphasises the inclusion of the original art or design pieces in the submission for examination within the framework of practice-based doctorates in the creative and performance arts and design (Frayling et al., 1997, pp. 14-17). The philosopher Biggs (2000), one of the early contributors to this form of research, also adds that practice-based research generates vast interest in practising artists and designers due to the fact that research projects following this approach can include the production of a creative exemplar in addition to, or possibly in preference to, a written thesis. However, he highlights that this approach is not limited to the creative and performance arts and design disciplines, but is applicable to any discipline where the outcome can be an artefact produced in the workshop or laboratory (e.g., engineering and software design).
The concepts that I will focus on are transference, countertransference, and projective identification. Bear in mind that these three processes are primarily unconscious. What render these concepts so useful to psychoanalysts, in the process of deriving some objective understanding of patients, are the controlled environment of the psychoanalytic office and the explicit terms of the relationship between the patient and psychoanalyst. However, they describe phenomena that are assumed to occur universally, intrapsychically and in any encounter between two or more people. Although other environments and types of relationships may not be as controlled, from an experimental point of view, these intrapsychic processes still occur and affect how we, as researchers, come to be in their presence and therefore, how we come to understand reality. For this reason, I believe that becoming familiar with these concepts may enhance any social or psychological researcher’s understanding.
The journal, Systems Research and Behavioral Science published a Festschrift issue on him in 2002 (Volume 19, Number 2), in which the editor, Ranulph Glanville wrote, “De Zeeuw has a lifetime of major work in areas central to cybernetics and systems--in both published form and in his activities as a teacher (and other forms of social activism)-- which has been influential and important, probably more than is realized.” Gerard has substantially brought forward our thinking on the design of support systems for individuals and groups confronted with various kinds of predicament, introducing methods of research that engage individual contributions to a collective activity. Some of the topics he has written about are: non-observational research, soft knowledge accumulation, third-phase science, complete collectives, and high-quality experience. Major Aim as Focus Editor. To help researchers develop a critical appreciation of what constitutes quality in research and why it is difficult to achieve in many domains, encouraging them to think in innovative ways to extend the process of research to such nontraditional domains where we aim to improve upon our intentions, emotions, and other experiences, but do not find a ready-made researchapproach.
As I began fieldwork in China to study projects of master planned green development that combine the construction of new “eco-cities” with transnational “green industries” as their economic engines, the longstanding critiques of modernist planning were clearly relevant (e.g., Holston, 1989; Scott, 1998). In the villages that I researched between 2007 and 2012, tens of thousands of people were being dispossessed of their homes, communities, land, livelihoods, and savings as the global green economy unfolded across the countryside. It is easy to excoriate any top-down utopian vision that requires such massive transformation without any forms of sanctioned recourse. However, finding a way to engage productively as a scholar of international development planning is more of a fraught proposition. While my multi-sited approach included ethnography of planners and government officials, this essay focuses on my interactions with villagers and how that has shaped my ongoing work to build solidarity outside the scope of my dissertation project.
In my aim to explore a culture beyond my “native” field, and to communicate my findings through visual reflections, my activity has similarities with that of an (visual) anthropologist. More specifically, as my projects stage the medical objects in the context of art, involving my personal viewpoint, they have similarities with methods such as performance ethnography and autoethnography. Like many artists, the adapter in performance ethnography prepares and stages a script employing texts collected from the field, and the characters of such compositions provide the analytical points and the commentary (McCall, 2003, pp. 122-123). Autoethnography, in turn, inserts the researcher’s personal experiences in the project (Denzin, 2003, p. 33), a feature that most artistic projects share. Even though my personal experience is not the object of portrayal as such, an autoethnographic approach resembles my practice as it attempts to disrupt the binary of science and art, and it recognizes the influence of a personal experience on the research process (see Ellis, Adams, & Bochner, 2011). As I visit a “medical tribe” and study their environment, I simultaneously try to hear my own voice with respect to my findings. That is, being embedded, doing interviews and role-plays, enables me to select or develop techniques and methods with which to visualize the (potential) landscape of this tribe. The artistic practices thus celebrate the imaginative potential of the mind, while employing training in perceptual and composition skills and techniques to use instruments such as a camera and the body. MacDougall (2006, p. 213) notes, in fact, that even though anthropology has an interest in the visual, the problem has always been what to do with the visual dimension. In this regard I consider artists to have a significantly different relationship with, and knowledge of, visual media than researchers within medicine and social studies.
makes use of it to muster his own biographical resources (“they hit a chord that puts you on the stroke of life”); there is a realistic appraisal of vulnerability and condition (“I may get over this”); finally there is a moral self-evaluation and willingness to contemplate closure (“I’ve done my best for my family”) which leads to compassion (“I feel sorry”). The “feel” of the statement is profoundly reparative. In Melanie Klein’s (1975) thinking this would indicate a “depressive position” which is orientated to gratitude and the desire to repair damage that one may have done. In order to collect this data an open narrative interview was conducted in what at that moment was the patient’s “natural” setting of the bedside, when his immediate responses to the music were still active. It is entirely possible to deconstruct his statement (an operation which confers experience-distance). However, its emotional impact was achieved through a metaphor—“a chord that puts you on the stroke of life,” and here the distance began to break down: the metaphor confers closeness to the quality of the experience—the patient’s psychological state bound up with his situation, elements of which remain distinct yet indissoluble in the “chord” which binds his own finite existence to a life and culture of which the researcher is a part. Sensitisation to the aesthetic of language (or behaviour or environment) is common in the interpretation of narrative interviews. It is obviously appropriate in an evaluation of an arts programme which is designed to activate aesthetic sensibility, but it may also be used in practice-near research to apprehend the tonalities, textures and forms of everyday life. Attunement to the aesthetics of experience is particularly important in the psychoanalytic thinking of Wilfred Bion (1962, 1970), and also in the work of German cultural analyst, Alfred Lorenzer (see Froggett & Hollway, 2010; Hollway & Froggett, 2012). Consider the following account which emerged from the researcher’s ethnographic observation, not of the art programme, but of the hospital’s atrium on an ordinary working day, and the comings and goings within it.
As self-focused writings gain more recognition as scholarly endeavor, we can only imagine that production of autoethnography will increase because the easy access to the source of data will encourage scholars under pressure of “publish or perish” to use their own lives as source of data for research. As scholars continue to engage in scholarship that blurs art and science, we imagine that autoethnographers as social scientists will face more pressure to defend our efforts converging these traditionally dichotomous elements- -art and science. Autoethnographers may respond to the pressure in three different ways. First, autoethnographers may continue to ride on the back of postmodern defiance against the conventional dichotomization between science and art. Whether they position themselves closer to the “ethnography” pole or to the “autobiography” pole in the auto- ethno-graphy continuum presented in Figure 1, they will continue to mix scientific inquiry and self-exploration and to express the mixture in descriptive-realistic, analytical- interpretive, confessional-emotive, or imaginative-creative writing. The descriptive- realistic and analytical-interpretive writing is more supported by the traditional scientific approach whereas the confessional-emotive and imaginative-creative writing is closer to artistic presentation. In the spirit of transcending the dichotomization, it is possible for autoethnographers to mix different styles of writing and presentations of inquiry in the final products of their autoethnographic writings.
The editorial introduction is a rich, persuasive, and passionate account of fieldwork accompanied by children, and the benefits and pitfalls of disclosing to local communities the researcher’s additional identity and status as a parent. The book is then divided into nine chapters grouped into three parts. Part I covers health, fieldwork, and family configuration. Part II gives space for the voices of the accompanying children and also for the experiential learning that comes from traveling to the field over a course of several years and through different life events. Part III is reserved for perspectives, in the form of art and drawings, from children too young to write, and logistical advice for adults considering relocation to the field with children. The last section is especially helpful for all parents relocating temporarily for work, research or otherwise, and not just for anthropologist-parents. Although written in the context of conducting fieldwork, the last section outlines options and realistic expectations regarding physical travel, childcare, healthcare, and schooling. Almost all that is written in this book can serve as learning material for all researchers, as much of the text contains reflective accounts of researchpractice in language that is accessible to all. I am an epidemiologist by training who has migrated to the field of assessment and evaluation of outcomes in the education of health professionals. I found the book to be free of specialist jargon and easy to follow.
Creativity, of course, is not confined to art practice. It exists in many forms. Einstein’s “happiest thought” came to him while he was sitting in the patent office in Bern, looking out of the window: “If a person falls freely he will not feel his own weight” (Einstein, 1922/1982, p. 46). It was through subsequent work and reflection that he arrived at an initial formulation of perhaps his most famous idea in 1905. This was perhaps inevitably incomplete and after his first groundbreaking publication, ten further years were spent revisiting, incorporating, and refining until he had arrived at the general theory of relativity. Although scientific approaches often involve “consecutive reasoning,” they can also involve intuition. The latter could be deemed to offer a starting point, a possible question, or perhaps the hint of a solution, but knowledge in this domain rarely if ever comes without hard work and application. In addition to the significance of asking the right question, a scientific approach can be as much concerned with how a process is laid bare, made retrievable, and its function agreed upon.
(c) Replicate. Replicate the study. Through replication, researchers can determine which components of their research design, including data collection, need to be revised. For example, if different groups of participants complete a study that measures plagiarism, and the results differ significantly, the method needs to be examined. When researchers replicate their study, the results acquire more credibility. This is particularly true when developing a plagiarism measure or modifying an existing plagiarism measure.
A feminist research methodology actively accounts for and addresses the power imbalances that exist not just between men and women, but also between researcher and participant (Bhan, this issue). Throughout this special issue, the authors are aware of their locality, which is frequently a privileged and powerful rung on the researcher/researched hierarchical ladder, and are struggling to resolve the ethical, emotional, and interpersonal questions and quandaries that inevitably arise when one goes to the field to do research. Through this process each of us has considered the common humanity that binds us together with those whose lives we document or touch in some capacity or another. Whether a sense of this solidarity leads us to “give” in less tight-fisted ways (e.g., Baker- Médard, this issue, writes about letting go of her “development scheme” requirements for loans to neighbors), or to extend research interviews into free-flowing conversational exchanges (Baker-Médard, Kelly, and Chen, all in this issue), or to focus on collaborative acts of community organizing, we are all learning about and reflecting upon the nature of the social interactions that develop during fieldwork. As Wesner et al. and Bodwitch (both in this issue) point out, it is the practicalities of giving back—the nitty-gritty on-the- ground negotiations—that serve as crucial moments for analysis and inquiry. These stories often make for more easily relatable, tell-able, and understandable examples of how privilege and power matter in research.
The fact that the daughter failed the exam became evident during the second part of the interview, when the interviewer probed this subject with a question seeking further narrative. Even before this piece of data was disclosed to the panel, they felt that this was the case by looking at Statement 1/25 and put forward the hypothesis that this not only meant the collapse of her hopes, but also the possibility to make up for her “failed” past as well as to overcome her feelings of powerlessness and futility. The panel decided that it is also apparent from the above statement that Subject 1 feels guilty for creating an obvious cause for unhappiness in the family by pushing her daughter to study so hard in trying to make up for her own losses. They argued that she feels ashamed that her intentions have been so visible and that she could not contain her negative feelings as a result of yet another major disappointment in her life. The panel felt that all this would make her feel like a failure and depressed and would lead the way for her husband to blame her for whatever happens next, in the sense that “she brought it all onto herself.” This view was confirmed by the following argumentation where she justifies her need to continue taking anti-depressants:
In the situations mentioned above, the researchers sensed a tense feeling of unease and discomfort as if they were intruding or about to trespass a zone of intimacy or privacy due to existentially or socially difficult life situations of the citizens involved. Sometimes the researchers withdrew from these situations as a matter of respect of the citizens’ state of being without knowing if the patient or the citizen would wish him or her to do so. Facing these challenges the researchers’ bodies responded differently, based on their own moral and emotional state of mind and due to the perceived conditions in the situations at stake. They felt an urge to hide behind their notebooks or turning off the recorder. They avoided eye contact, trying to make themselves invisible before the gaze of the citizens. Basically they shut out the world by withdrawing from the situations in a mentally distanced way or by physically avoiding entering the rooms and houses. They were caught in a perceived and embodied dilemma between respecting the citizen and conducting their research on the scene, resulting in a bodily grounded confusion of where to place their bodies in the situation and how to respond to the sensed interests at stake.
(a) Fieldwork is likely to fail if there is a lack of goodness of fit between you and the group of interest. In the first fieldwork example provided above, it is clear that the rural men were very different from PG and that it would have been necessary for him to spend a very long time with them and evolve aspects of his identity and his life to become a member. PG was not willing to make such a commitment, which was a factor contributing to the discontinuation of that fieldwork site. PG’s insider status provided a better fit with the gymnasium men and, although gaining entry was challenging and required sacrifice, it did not involve changing fundamental parts of himself or his life. While we are aware that some ethnographers are prepared for this level of sacrifice, many (including PG) are not. As such, prior to commencing fieldwork and, ideally, prior to choosing a site/group, you need to determine how far you are willing to go in an effort to join with the group, including what you are and are not willing to sacrifice to do so. (b) Fieldwork relationships need to develop naturally. Forcing the pace, such that it is too fast and unnatural for the participants, can undermine rapport and compromise the quality of the data collected. Thus, while you will inevitably have time restraints, it is best to block them out of your mind where possible when engaging with group members. In particular, avoid forcing interviews through when you know rapport is not sufficient. Follow your interpersonal instincts on this, but keep in mind that if you are feeling overly anxious and ill-at-ease when requesting interviews, your relationship with the participant is probably not yet strong enough to get naturalistic authentic data.
A third example to illustrate T3 and T4 translational research comes from public health. The Pittsburgh Influenza Prevention Project (PIPP) was a prospective, controlled, cluster- randomized design to test the effectiveness of a suite of multi-layered, non- pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) in controlling influenza in elementary schools. At the T1 level, it is now accepted as fact that soap and alcohol based hand sanitizers kill germs. Stebbins, Stark, and Vukotich (2010) found six T2 studies that demonstrated school children could adopt NPIs and obtain a positive outcome. PIPP built on the T2 studies and created a large scale NPI intervention, a T3 translation. Stebbins, Cummings et al. (2011) found that the intervention was effective in reducing influenza A by 52% and absenteeism by 26%. PIPP extended this research into T4 by disseminating the results to schools in the region for the NPIs to be adopted as school-wide policy. The full implementation of a T4 research effort would have included the evaluation of schools adopting the intervention policy, but PIPP was not able to do this fully.
Graduate education can be configured in many ways. Students might still specialize in a particular discipline, but be exposed to interdisciplinary techniques and encouraged to interact with students from other disciplines or take courses in other disciplines. Or students might delve in depth into two or three disciplines in the pursuit of a well-defined interdisciplinary research question. To cite just one of several examples, Lyall and coauthors at The University of Edinburgh have led graduate interdisciplinary seminars for years; their recent book (Lyall, Bruce, Tait, & Meagher, 2011) is full of advice for students, supervisors, and administrators.