I don’t think I did justice to the life story of my interview participant. I found Kim’s (2016) description and discussion about using a Bildungsroman as a narrative is engaging and the most compelling narrative writing style that was discussed in the text to me. She describes it as “is a story of one’s Bildung that focuses on cultivating and forming one’s disposition of mind involving intellectual and moral endeavor” (p. 227). The Bildungsroman seems to look more like a lifetime of the subject and provide some overarching aspects. The ideas that there are spiritual or personal growth and the focus on the journey that was taken.
I didn’t focus the interview on her story as on her perceptions and thoughts on several subjects. The interview included too many different subjects to really this approach. Just as Kim (2006) discussed in Chapter eight, my interview falls within the idea of doing backyard research. I foresee my dissertation having a strong possibility that some of my colleagues will also participate in the participatory action design of my currently planned study. I need to examine how my multiple roles might impact the research both for this interview and my dissertation.
One of the areas that I was given feedback in my paper is the limited inclusion of quotes. I found it hard to say what to quote and describe and tended to use more narrative smoothing to provide the descriptions. My method used to present my findings also somewhat deemphasized my interview subject. My initial attempt was to compare some themes and discussions that my participant made and how those might connect to some of the research I have been digesting.
I attempted to follow the format of description, analysis, and interpretation, as Wolcott (1994) described. He explains that the description addresses the question, the analysis identifies the essential features, and the interpretation addresses meanings and contexts. For each of the themes I had, I talked about it from the perspective I have seen in other studies, the connection, and some description or connection from my interview. Then I talked about what the significance was and the context of that. At least that was my intent; whether or not my implementation was the best, I’m not sure.
To specifically address my implementation of analyzing the life-story from your interview, I somewhat did this. I did attempt to include a type of small story, as discussed in Kim (2006). In my interview, I asked my participant about an experience that she saw a student act out. I included a description and the narrative of the story. It was a pretty graphic retelling of the experience of a student acting out.
Kim, J.-H. (2016). Understanding narrative inquiry: The crafting and analysis of stories as research. SAGE.
Wolcott, H. F. (1994). Chapter 2 - Description, analysis, and interpretation in qualitative inquiry. In Transforming Qualitative Data (pp. 9-54). SAGE.
The following essay was originally posted to the online discussion forum for TSD 6660 - Narrative Research as a part of my Ph.D. Studies in Transformative Studies at the California Institute of Integral Studies.