‘The past was never simply there to begin with and the future is not simply what will unfold’

a posthumanist performative approach to qualitative longitudinal research

Natasha Mauthner

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13 Citations (Scopus)
4 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

In this article I argue that in their current genealogical and philosophical configuration, qualitative longitudinal research (QLR) practices – and a wider regime of knowledge, ethical, moral, legal, technological, political and economic practices with which they are entangled – embed and enact representational assumptions in which the realities being investigated – time, change and continuity; the past, present and future – are taken as ontologically given and independent of these QLR (and wider) practices. My approach is to conceptualize QLR practices along nonrepresentational lines, through a philosophical framework that is able to materialize the constitutive effects of QLR (and wider) practices on the objects of study and knowledges produced. For this, I turn to Karen Barad’s posthumanist performative metaphysics – ‘agential realism’ – a framework that embodies and enacts a non-classical ontology in which entities are seen as constituted through material-discursive practices. On this account, QLR (and wider) practices are understood as an ineliminable and constitutive part of the realities they help bring into being.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)321-336
Number of pages16
JournalInternational Journal of Social Research Methodology
Volume18
Issue number3
Early online date1 Apr 2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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research practice
metaphysics
realism
ontology
continuity
present
knowledge
economics
time

Keywords

  • ontology
  • representation
  • Barad
  • posthumanism
  • performativity
  • agential realism
  • diffraction
  • qualitative longitudinal research practices
  • revisiting practices

Cite this

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title = "‘The past was never simply there to begin with and the future is not simply what will unfold’: a posthumanist performative approach to qualitative longitudinal research",
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