Practicing Poetic Inquiry: Bringing Affective Perspectives into Qualitative Research
Keywords:Poetic inquiry, qualitative analysis, affect, youth research, applied research
Poetic inquiry is a so-called ‘umbrella’ for various ways of using poetic and literary tools to produce qualitative analyses of life lived. Papers on this topic often present poetic analyses and discuss various methodological issues such as representation, researcher subjectivity or ‘validity’. However, it seems that there is also a need for papers that offer detailed descriptions of how to practise poetic inquiry. Therefore, this paper will aim to answer the question of what is involved in the process of poetic inquiry. I will describe in detail three analytical stages in the process of creating poetic analyses: deleting and moving text, condensing and theoretical interaction. As a means of illustration of the process, I will use an interview with a young woman who struggles to stay in the educational system. To analyse this interview, Ahmed’s concept of ‘affective economies’ will be used as the theoretical framework that interacts with the analytical processes. This is chosen to enhance the potential of including affective perspectives in applied social research without it being the centre of analytical attention.
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