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PARADIGMATIC CONTROVERSIES/ CONTRADICTIONS/ AND EMERGING CONFLUENCES Yvonna S. Lincoln and Egon G. Guba n our chapter for the first edition of the Handbook of Qualitative Research, we fo- cused on the contention among various re- search paradigms for legitimacy and intellectual and p;uadigmatic hegemony (Guba & Lincoln, 1994). The postmodern paradigms that we dis- cussed (postmodernist critical theory and con- structivism) 1 were in contention with the re- ceived positivist and postpositivist paradigms for legitimacy, and with one another for intellec- tual legitimacy. In the half dozen years that have elapsed since that chapter was published, sub- stantial change has occurred in the landscape of social scientific inquiry. On the matter of legitimacy, we observe that readers familiar with the literature on methods and paradigms reflect a high interest in ontologies and epistemologies that differ sharply from those undergirding conventional social science. Second, even those professionals trained in quantitative social sci- ence (including the two of us) want to learn more about qualitative approaches, because new young professionals being mentored in graduate schools are asking serious questions about and looking for guidance in qualitatively oriented studies and dissertations. Third, the number of qualitative texts, research papers, workshops, and training materials has exploded. Indeed, it would be difficult to miss the distinct turn of the social sciences more interpretive, postmodern, and criticalist practices and theo- rizing (Bloland, 1989, 1995). This nonpositivist orientation has created a context (surround) in which virtually no study can go unchallenged by proponents of contending paradigms. Further, it 63

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  • 1. PARADIGMATIC CONTROVERSIES/ CONTRADICTIONS/ AND EMERGING CONFLUENCES Yvonna S. Lincoln and Egon G. Guba n our chapter for the first edition of the sharply from those undergirding conventional Handbook of Qualitative Research, we fo- social science. Second, even those est::~blished cused on the contention among various re- professionals trained in quantitative social sci-search paradigms for legitimacy and intellectual ence (including the two of us) want to learnand p;uadigmatic hegemony (Guba & Lincoln, more about qualitative approaches, because new1994). The postmodern paradigms that we dis- young professionals being mentored in graduatecussed (postmodernist critical theory and con- schools are asking serious questions about andstructivism) 1 were in contention with the re- looking for guidance in qualitatively orientedceived positivist and postpositivist paradigms studies and dissertations. Third, the number offor legitimacy, and with one another for intellec- qualitative texts, research papers, workshops,tual legitimacy. In the half dozen years that have and training materials has exploded. Indeed, itelapsed since that chapter was published, sub- would be difficult to miss the distinct turn of thestantial change has occurred in the landscape of social sciences tow::~rd more interpretive,social scientific inquiry. postmodern, and criticalist practices and theo- On the matter of legitimacy, we observe that rizing (Bloland, 1989, 1995). This nonpositivistreaders familiar with the literature on methods orientation has created a context (surround) inand paradigms reflect a high interest in which virtually no study can go unchallenged byontologies and epistemologies that differ proponents of contending paradigms. Further, it 63
  • 2. 164 + PARADIGMS AND PERSPECTIVES IN TRANSITIONis obvious that the number of practitioners of l
  • 3. TABLE 6.1 Basic Belief (Metaphysics) of Alternative Inquiry Paradigms Item Positivism Postpostivism Critical Jheory eta/. Cons/ me I i vism ~-- --- ----- Ontology Naive realism- "rcal" C ritical realism-"real" reality Hisrorical real ism-virtual reality Relar i v ism-local reality but apprehendable but only imperfecrly and shaped by social, political, cultural, :llJJ spe.:ific con- probabilistically apprehendable economic, ethnic, and gender value~; structed realities crystallized over rime -------- Epistemology Dualist/obje cr iv isr; Modified dualist/objectivist; Transacrional/subjecti vist; value- Tramacrional/ findings true critical traditio n/community; mediated find ings subjectivist/ findings probably true crc:ared findings Methodology Expt:rimenral/ Modified ex perimental/ Dialogic/dialecrio.:al Hermeneurical/ manipulative; verification manipulative; critical mulriplism; di~1lecrical of hypotheses; chietly falsification of hypothesc:s; may quantitative methods include qualitative methods()Vl
  • 4. 0o, TABLE 6.2 Paradigm Positions on Selected Practical Issues . Item Positivism Postpositivism Critical Theory et ul. Cu11struct ivi sm Inquiry aim explanation: prediction and control critique :md transfo rmati on; understanding; reconstructio n restitmion and em:tnc1pation Nature of knowledge verified hypotheses establi shed nonb.lsified hypotheses that StnJCtural/ historical insights individual reconstructions :ISfacts o r laws are probable facts o r bws coalesci ng cuound cumemu> Knowledge accumubtion accrction- "building blocks " adding to "edifice of knowledge"; hisroric:~l revisionism; gcneral 111urc iniurmcd a nd sophist! gcncraliz.uions :111d c:lllsc-dfcct linkages izat io n by si nlibri ty l..a tc.:d rc~onstnh.:tit..ms; Vh.:arilHI!I experience Goodness or q11ality criteria conventional bmchm:trks oi "rigor": internal :tnd historic:tl situatcdncss; crosiun trustworrhiness and external validity, reliability, and objectivity of ignorance a nd misapprchcn authenticity sion; action stimul11s V:tlues excluded-influence denied indudcd- iorm:Jtive Ethics cxtrimic: tilt row:trd deception intrinsic: moral tilt toward intrmsic: process tilt wward revdation revelation; special prublerm Voice "disinterested scicmist" JS informer of d~cision makers, transformative intellectual" "passionate participant" a~ fa- policy makers, and change agents as :tdvocatc and activist cilitator oi multivoicc reco n- struction Ji-aining technical and quantitative; technical; qua mitativc and resoci aliz:~ ti un; qtJJlnative and qu:m titative; hiswry; substantive theories qualitative; substantive values oi altnmm and empowcrmelll theories Accommodation commensurable i 11COillll1ellSUr:~bJe Hegemony in comrul ui publication, funding, promotion, and tenure seeking rLcugniti on a11d input l ~-- - --- - - -
  • 5. fJaradigmatic Controversies, Contradictions, and Emerging Confluences + 16 7Or issues rn:1y be import:Jnt because new or ex- research will find th:.tt echoes of many stre:.tms ofte nded theoretic::ll tnd/or field-oriented treat- thought come together in the extended table.ments for them are newly nailable-voice and What this means is that the categories, as Laurelretlexiviry are rwo such issues. Richardson (personal co mmunication, Septem- Taole 6.3 reprises the original Table 6.1 bur ber 12, 1998) has pointed out, "are fl uid, indeedad ds the axioms of the participatory paradigm what should be a category keeps altering, enlarg-proposed by Heron and Reason (1997). Table ing." She notes that "even JS [we] write, the6.4 deals wit~ seven issues and represents an boundaries between rhe paradigms are shifting."update of sele.:red issues first presented in the This is the paradigmatic equ ivalent of theold Table 6.2. "Voice" in the 1994 version of Ta- Geerrzian "blurring of genres" to which we re-ble 6.2 h::ts been renamed "inquirer posture," ferred earlier.and a redefined "voice" has been inserted in the Our own position is that o f the constructio n isrcurrent Table 6.5. In all cJses except "inquirer camp, loosely defined. We do nor believe that cri-posture," the entries for the Ptrticiparory para- teria for judging either "reality" or validity aredigm are those proposed by Heron and Reason; absolutist (Bradley & Schaefer, 1998), but ratherin rhe one case not covered by them, we have are derived from community consensus regard-Jdded a notation that we believe c::tptures their ing what is "real," what is useful, and what hasintention. meaning (especially meaning for action and fur- Xe make no ::tttempr here to reprise the ma- ther steps). We believe that a goodly portion ofterial well discussed in our earlier Handbook social phenomena consists of the meaning-chapter. Instead, we focus solely on the issues in making activities of groups and individuals around those phenomena. The meaning-makinghble 6.5: axiology; ::tccommodarion and com- activities themselves are of central interest to so-mensurability; action; control; foundations of cial constructionists/constructivists, simply be-truth and knowledge; validity; and voice, re- cause it is the meaning-making/sense-making/Hexivity, and postmodern textual representa- attributional activities that shape action (or inac-tion. We believe these seven issues to be the tion). The meaning-making activities themselvesmost important at this time. can be changed when they are found to be incom- While we believe these issues to be the most plete, faulty (e.g., discriminatory, oppressive, orcontentious, we ::tlso believe they create the in- nonliberatory), or malformed (created from datatellectual, theoretical, and practical space for that can be shown to be false).dialogue, consensus, and confluence to occur. We have tried, however, to incorporate per-There is great potential for interweaving of spectives from other major nonpositivist para-viewpoints, for the incorporation of multiple digms. This is nor a complete summation; spaceperspe.:rives, and for borrowing or bricolage, constraints prevent that. What we hope to do inwh~:re borrowing seems useful, richness en- this chapter is to acquaint readers with the largerhancing, or theoretically heuristic. For in- currents, arguments, dialogues, and provocativesr::~nce, even though we ::tre ourselves social writings and theorizing, the better to see perhaps onstructivists/contructionists, our call to ac- what we ourselves do not even yet see: where ::tnd tion embedded in rhe authenticity criteria we when confluence is possible, where constructive elaborated in Fourth Generation Evaluation rapprochement might be negotiated, where (Guba & Lincoln, 1989) reflects strongly the voices are beginning to ::tchieve some harmony. bent to action embodied in critical theorists perspectives. And although Heron and Reason have elaborated a model they call rhe coopera-tive paradigm, careful reading of their proposal + kdology reveals a form of inquiry that is post- posrposirive, postmodern, and criricalisr in ori- ent::ttion. As a result, the reader familiar with Earlier, we pbced values on the tab le as an "is-several theoretical and paradigmatic strands of sue" on which positivists o r pheno menologists
  • 6. ()co TABLE 6.3 Basic Beliefs of Altern:nive Inquiry Paradigms-Updated Issue Positivism Postpositivism Critical Theory et a/. Constructilism Participatory a Ontology naive rcalism-real" critical realism-"real" historical realism- relativism-local and participative realiry- reality bnr reality bnt only imper- virrual reality shaped specific constructed subjective-objecti ve appn.:hendable fectly and by social, political, cul- realities reality, cocreated by probabilisrically tural, economic, ethnic, mind and given cosmos apprehendable and gender values crys- tallized over time Epistemology dualist/objectivist; modified Transactional/ Transactional/ critical subjectivity in findings true dualist/objectivist; subjectivist; value- subjectivist; created participatory transaction critical tradition/ mediated findings findings with cosmos; extended community; findings epistemology of experi- probably true ential, propositional , and practical knowing; cocreated findings Methodology experimental/manipula- modified experimen- dialogic/dialectic hermeneutic/dialectic political participation in tive; verification of tal/manipulative; critical collaborative action in- hypotheses; chiefly multiplism; falsification quiry; primacy of the quantitative methods of hypotheses; may practical; use of lan- include qualitative guage grounded in methods shan~d experiential con- text a. Entries in rhis column are ha>eJ on Heron and Kc as on ( 19 97 ).
  • 7. Paradigmatic Controversies, Contradictions, and Emerging Confluences + 169mighr h.1ve cl "posture (Cuba & Lincoln, "sacrrJ science" and human functioning find 198 . 199-f; Linco ln &Cuba, 19H5). Fortu- leginmacy; it is ;1 place where Laurel Richard-n c~rel, we rese rved for ourselves the right to ei- sons sacred spaces" become authori tative siresther get snurter or just clunge our minds. Y/e for human inquiry; it is a place-or the place-did both. tow, we suspect (although Table 6.3 where the spiritual meers social inquiry, as Rea-~ioes not yet reflect it) rhar "axiology" should be son ( 1993 ), and later Lincoln and Denzin ( 1994 )," t o uped with "bJsic beliefs." In Naturalistic In- proposed some years earlier.cJttiry (Lincoln, & Cuba, 1985), we coveredsome o r the ways in which values feed into theinquiry process: choice of rh..: problem, choice + Accommodation andoi p;1radigm to guide the problem, choice ofrheo rerical framework, choice of major Commensurabilitydau-garhering and clara-analytic methods,:.:hoice o f context, treatment of values alreadyresident within the conexr, and choice of for- Positivists and postpositivists alike still occasi on-m::~t(s) for pr..:seming findings. We believed ;Illy argue that paradigms are, in some ways, com-those were strong enough reasons to argue for mensurable; that is, they can be retrofitted tothe inclusion of values as a major point of de- each other in ways that make the simultaneouspJrture between positivist, conventional modes practice of both possible. We have argued that atof inquiry and interpretive forms of inquiry. the paradigmatic, or philosophical, level, com- A second "reading" of the burgeoning litera- mensurability between positivist and postposi-ture and subsequent rethinking of our own ra- tivist worldviews is not possible, but that withintio!)ale have led us to conclude that the issue is each paradigm, mixed methodologies (strategies)much larger than we first conceived. If we had it may make perfectly good sense (Cuba & Lincoln,to do all over again, we would make values or, 1981, 1982, 1989, 1994; Lincoln & Cuba,more correctly, axiology (the branch of philoso- 1985). So, for instance, in Effective Evaluationphy dealing with ethics, aesthetics, and reli- we argued:gion) a part of the basic foundational philo-sophical dimensions of paradigm proposal. The guiding inqu iry paradigm most appropri:~t~Doing so would, in our opinion, begin to help to responsive evaluation is .. . the naturalistic,us see the embeddedness of ethics within, not phenomenological, or ethnographic paradigm. Itexternal to, paradigms (see, for instance, Chris- will be seen that qualitative techniques are typi-tians, Chapter 5, this volume) and would con- cally most appropri:ne to support this approach.tribute to the consideration of and dialogue Th~re are times. however, when the issues and concerns voiced by audiences require inforrrla-about the role of spirituality in human inquiry. tion that is best generated by more co nventionalArguably, a.xiology has been " defined out of" methods, especially quantitative methods .... Inscientific inquiry for no larger a reason than such cases, the responsive conventional evaluatorthat it also concerns "religion." But defining ) will not shrink from the appropri:ttc application. religion" broadly ro encompass spirituality (Guba & Lincoln, 1981, p. 36)wo uld move constructivists closer to partici-pative inquirers and would move critical theo- As we tried to make clear, the "argument"rists closer to both (owing to their concern with arising in the social sciences was not aboutliber::~tion from oppression and freeing of the method, although many critics of the new natu-human spirit, both profoundly spiritual con- ralistic, ethnographic, phenomenological, and/orcerns). The expansion of basic issues to include case study approaches assumed it was. 2 As late asa.xiology, then, is one way ro achieving greater 1998, Weiss could be found to claim that "Someconfluence among the various interpretivist in- evaluation theorists, notably Cuba and Lincolnquiry models. This is the place, for example, (1989), hold that it is impossible to combine qual-where Peter Reasons profound concerns with itative and quantitative approaches responsibly (Continued on p. 174)
  • 8. 23 IJ TABLE 6.4 Paradigm Positions on Selc:cted Issues-Updated ! Issue Positivism Postpositivism Critical 111eory et al. Cunst mctivism l
  • 9. inquirer posture disinrerested scientist" rransformative "passionate partici - prinury vo ice manifest as informer of decision intellectual" as pant" as facili tator of through aware ~eli-r e makers, policy makers, advocate and activist mulrivoice reconstruc- flective acti on; second- and change agents non ary voi..:es in illuminat- ing theory, narrative, movement, song, dance, and other pres- entational fonm Training technical and technical, quantitative, resocial ization; qualitative and quantitative; coresearchers are initi- quantitative; and qualitative; history; values of altruism and empowerment ated into the inquiry substantive theories substantive theories process by facilita- tor/ researcher and learn thro ugh active engagement in the pro- cess; facili tator/re- searcher requires emo- tional competence, democratic personality and skills a. Entri.:s in rhis column arc based on Heron and Reason (1997), exc.:pt for "ethics" and values."---.1
  • 10. .,::::::::!::!~Slll-=:l::ll:.::::==:.:llli::.:":;.:; . ,._ ...... .. "E z= -2-...::J..--JtO TABLE 6.5 Critical Issues of the Time Issue Positivism Postpositivism Critical Th~ory et a/. Const met ivis111 Hnticifltory Axiology Propositional knowing about the world is an Propositional, transactional knowing is instrn- Practical knowing end in itself, is intrinsically valuable. mentally valuable as a means to social emanci- about how to flourish pation, which as an end in itself, is intrinsically with a balance of au- valuable. ronomy, cooperation, and hierarchy in a cul- ture is an end in itself, is intrinsically valuable. Accommodation and commensurable for all positivist forms incommensurable with positivist forms; some commensurability with commensurability constructivist, criticalist, and participatory approaches, especially as they merge in liberationist approaches outside the West Action no t the responsibility of the researcher; found especially in the intertwined with validity; inquir y often viewed as "advocacy " or subjectivity, and form of empowerment; incomplete without action on the parr of therefore a threat ro validity and objectivity emancipation antici- participants; constructivist formulation pated and hoped for; mandates training in political action if social transformation, participants do not understand political particularly toward systems more equity and justice, is end goal Control resides solely in n:searcher often resides in shared between shared to varri ng "transfo rmati ve inrel- inquirer and degrees lecrual "; in new con- parricip:lllts structions, control re- turns ro community
  • 11. Rebrionship w foun- tuundational foundational foundational within :illtittJl!lld.ltitJJl:l l lltJII [, HII hi.ll lt ll!.d clarions of truth and social critiqu~ knowl~dge Exr~nded consider- traditional positivist constructi ons of validity; action stimulus extended comtrucrir)Jis see a.:rtoll" above ations o f validiry rigor, internal validity, external validity, (see above); social of validity: (a) crystal- (goodness criteria) reliability, objectivity transformation, line val idity (Richard- equity, social justice son); (b) aurhemicity criteria (Guba & Lin- coln); (c) catalytic, rhizomatic, voluptuous validiri~s (Lather); (d) relational and eth- ics-centered criteria (Lincoln); (e) commu- nity-center~d determi- nations of validity Voice, reflexivity, voice of the researcher, principally; reflexivity voices mixed between voice> mixed, with vo ices mixed; textual posrmodern textual may be considered a problem in objectivity; researcher and parricipants voices representation Llrel ) representations textual represt:nrarion unproblematic and participants sometimes dom inant; discussed, bm prob- somewhat formulaic reflexivity serious and lematic; refl exivity re- problematic; textual lies on critical subjec- represelltation an tivity and extended issue self-awareness Textual representation practices may be problematic-i.e., " fiction formulas," or unexamined "regi mes of truth"--..1 ~--------- -----~w
  • 12. : 7 4 + PARADIGMS AND PERSPECTIVES IN TRA1"lSITIONwithin an evaluation" (p. 268), even though we els, because the axioms are co ntrad icto ry ,tnJstJted e:.~rly on in Fourth Gt!neration Evaluation mutually exclusive.(1989) that those claims, concerns and issues that have not been resolved become rhe advance organizers for The Call to Action information collectio n by rhe evaluator. ... The information may be quantitMive or qualitative. Responsive evaluation does not rule out quanti- tative modes, as is mist:1kenly believed by many, but deals with whatever information is respon- One of the clearest ways in which the paradig- sive ro the unresolved claim, concern, or issue. matic controversies can be demo nstrated is to (p. 43) compare the positivist and postp ositivist ~ldher ents, who view action as a form of contamtna-We h:.~J also strongly Jsscrted earlier, in Natural- tion of research results and processes, and th eistic Inquiry (1985), that interpretivists, who see action on research re- sults as a meaningful and important outcome o f ! qualitative methods are stressed within the natu- inquiry processes. Positivist adherents believe ralistic paradigm nor because the paradigm is action to be either a form of advocacy or a fo rm antiquantitative bur because qualitative methods come more easily to the human-as-instrument. of subjectivity, either or both of which under- The reader should particularly note the absence mine the aim of objectivity. Critical theorists, of an antiquantitative stance, precisely because on the other hand, have always advocated vary- the naturalistic and conventional paradigms are ing degrees of social action, from the overturning so often-mistakenly--equated with the qualita- of specific unjust practices to radical transfo rma- ttve and quantitative paradigms, respectively. In- deed, there are many opportunities for the natu- tion of entire societies. The call fo r action- ralistic investigator to utilize quantitative whether in terms of internal transfo rmatio n, data-probably more than are appreciated. such as ridding oneself of false consciousness, o r (pp. 198-199; emphasis added) of external social transformation-differenti- ates between positivist and postmodern criti- Having demonstrated that we were not then calist theorists (including fem inist and queer(and are not now) talking about an antiquan- theorists).titJtive posture or the exclusivity of methods, The sharpest shift, however, has been in thebut rather the philosophies of which paradigms constructivist and participatory pheno meno lo -are constructed, we can ask the question again gical models, where a step beyond interp retatio nregarding commensurability: Are paradigms and Verstehen, or understanding, toward socia lcommensurable? Is it possible ro blend elements action is probably one of the most co nceptuallvof one paradigm intO another, so that one is en- interesting of the shifrs (Lincoln, 1997, 19:!8a.gaging in research that represents the best of 1998b). For some theorists, the shift toward ~~cboth worldviews? The answer, from our per- tion came in response to widespread nonut i-spective, has to be a cautious yes. This is espe- lization o f evaluation findings and the desire tocially so if the models (paradigms) share axiom- create forms o f evaluation that wou ld attractatic elements that are similar, or that resonate champions who might follow through on rec-strongly between them. So, for instance, positiv- ommendations with meaningfu l action plamism and postpositivism are clearly commensura- (Guba & Lincoln, 1981, 1989). For others, em-ble. In the same vein, elements of inter- bracing actio n came as both a political and anpretivist/postmodern critical theory, constructi- ethical commitment (see, for instance, in thisvist and participative inquiry fit comfortably to- volume, Greenwood & Levin, Chapter 3; Chris-gether. Commensurability is an issue only when tians, Chapter 5; Tierney, Chapter 20; see alsoresearchers want to "pick and choose" among Carr & Kemmis, 1986; Schratz & Walker,the axioms of positivist and interpretivist mod- 1995).
  • 13. r,zradigmatic Controversies, Contradictions, and Emerging Confluences I :) Vh ~uever the source of the problem to from voice, reflexivity, and issues of textual rep-which inquirers wae responding, the shift to- resentation, because each of those issues in someward connecting resear,ch, policy analysis, eval- way threatens claims to rigor (particularly objec-u;uion, and/or soci:tl deconstruction (e.g., de- tivity and validity). For new-paradigm inquirersconstruction of the patri~m:hal forms of who have seen the preeminent paradigm issues ofo pp ression in social structures, which is the ontology posed had str o ng moral J.nd ethical cre~te new relationships: ro her research partici- ,.- : .c:;. J ooinr ro which we Llter returned pants, ro her work, to other women, to herself. .: . ~ .n~r,;r;cc::. Linco ln. [ 9 95, !9 98J, 1998b). She says that transgressive form s permit a social . 1 1 .,,,,n ro w h ich o ur .::ritics strongly ob- scientist w conjure a different kind of social sci- .: c : l [C: C:: w ere su rfici en rl y self-aware to ence . .. [which] means changing ones rebtio n- : - ,c: 1mp lic:Hio ns of what we:: had pro- ship to ones w ork, how one knows and tells -~..; - .: ~ . ro r ins ance. Sechrest, 1993). about the sociological" (p. ! 66). In o rder to see _;:.;. :-!fc .md t.rctic..zl clllthenticities n: fer ro "how transgression looks and ho w it feels," it is : ,,,h o f .1 g iven inquiry ro prompt, first, ac- necessary to "find a nd deploy methods th~t allow : , , :he: pJ.n of rese:1rch participants, and us t o uncover the h idden assumptions and cc:. :he involvement o f rhe researcher/evJI- life-de n ying re pressions of socio logy; resee/refeel . - o rr.11n ing pa r ti..:ipanrs in specific forms !t sociology. Reseeing a nd retelling are inseparable .. .::.!1 wJ po liticJ.l action if participants de- (p. 167). . : , ..::1 :rJin ing. lt is here dut constructivist The way to achieve such validity is by examin- .. twr, p r.Knce begins to ro:sc::mblc: forms of ing the properties of a crystal in a metaphoric - :1..:J! theo ri st action, action research, or sense. Here we present ~n extended quotation to ~~1 .:: ;- .tn, e o r coope rative inquiry, each of give so me flavor of ho w such validity might be , 11..: 11 is predicJted on creating the capacity in described and deployed::::~.trc h participJnts for positive social change1::J iorms o f em:mcipato ry community action. iI propose that the central imaginary for "validity".: ,, .tis Jt this specific point thar practitioners for postmodernist texts is nut the triangle-a : ;-osi ti,ist and posrpos irivist social inquiry are rigid, fixed, two-dimensional object. Rather the;:c: most cri tical, bec~use any actio n on the part central imaginary is the crystal, which co mbines symmetry and substance with an infinite variety i the inquirer is thought to destabilize objectiv- of shapes, substances, transmutations, multidi-Y .md introduce subjectivity, resulting in bias. mensionalities, and angles o f approach. Crystals Th e problem of subjectivity ~nd bias has a , grow, change, alter, but are not amo rphous. Crys-lo ng thc:oretical history, and this chapter is sim- tals are prisms that retlect externalities and rdract [y roo brief for us to enter into the v~rious for- within themselves, creating different colors, pat- terns, arrays, casting off in different directions.mu!Jtions that either take acco unt of subjectiv- What we see depends upon our angle of repose.~~ o r posit it .ts a positive learning experi ence, Not triangulation, crystallization. In postmod-pracrical. c:mbodied, gendered, and emotive. c:rnist mixed-genre texts, we have moved fromFo r purposes of this discuss io n, it is enough to plane geometry to light theory, where light can beuy that we :1re persuaded that objectivity is a both waves and particles. Crystallization, with- ! our losing stru.;:ture, deconstructs the tradi-.:himer:t: ~mythological creature that neve r ex- tional idea of ~validity" (we feel how there is not red, sae in the imaginati o ns of those who be- , single rruth, we see how texts validate them-IJeve thJt knowing can be separated from the selves) ; and crystallization provides us with aknower. deepened, complex, thoroughly partial under- standing of the to pic. Paradoxically, we know more and do ubt what we know. (Richardson, alidity as Resistance, Validity as 1997, p. 92)Poststructuml Transgression The metaphoric "solid object" (cryst~l!text), l.1urel Richardson (1994, 1997) has pro- which can be turned many ways, which reflectsposed another form of validity, a deliberately and refracts light (light/ multiple layers of mean- transgressive" form, the crystalline. In writing ing), through which we can see both "wave"expe rimental (i.e., nonauthoritativc , nonposi- (light wave/human currents) and " particle" (lightllYlSt) tex ts , particularly poems and plays, Rich- as "chunks" of energy/elements of truth, feeling,ardso n (199 7 ) has sought to "problematize reli- connection, processes of the research that "flow"
  • 20. 182 + PARADIGMS AND PERSPECTIVES IN TRAt"ISITIONrogether) is an attractive metaphor for validity. both what we know :1nd our relationshipsThe properties of the crystal-as-metaphor help our research participants. Accordingly, onewriters and readers alike see the interweaving of (Lincoln, 1995) worked on trying to undeprocesses in rhe research: discovery, seeing, tell- the ways in which the ethical intersecteding, srorying, re-presentation. the interpersonal and the epistemological (as form of authentic or valid bowing). TheOther "Transgressive" Validities was the first set of understandings about emerg- ing criteria for quality that were also rooted in the epistemology/ethics nexus. Seven nar L:turel Richardson is nor alone in calling for standards were derived fro m rh:1r se3rch: PQSforms of V3lidity that are "transgressive" and tio nality, or standpoint, judgments; specific dis-disruptive of the status quo. Patti Lather (1993) course communities and research sires as arbj..seeks "an incitement to discourse," the purpose ters of quality; voice, or the exte nt ro which aof which is "to rupture validity as a regime of text has rhe quality of polyvocality; critical sub-truth, to dispbce its historical inscription .. . via jectivity (or what might be termed intense3 dispersion, circulation and proliferation of self-reflexivity); reciprocity, or the exrenr tocounter-practices of authority that take the crisis which the research relationship becomes recip-of representation into account" (p. 674). In ad- rocal rather than hierarchical; sacredness, or thedition to catalytic validity (lather, 1986), Lather profound regard for how science c::m (and does)(1993) poses validity as simulacra/ironic valid- contribute to human flourishing; and sharingity; Lyotardian paralogy/neopragmatic validity, the perquisites of privilege that accrue to our po-3 form of validity that "foster[s] heterogeneity, sitions as academics with university positions.refusing disclosure" (p. 679); Derridean Each of these standards .,;.,as extracted from arigor/rhizomatic validity, a form of behaving body of research, often from disciplines as dispa-"via relay, circuit, multiple openings" (p. 680); rate as management, philosophy, 3nd womensand voluptuous/situated validity, which "em- studies (Lincoln, 1995).bodies a situated, partial tentativeness" and"brings ethics and epistemology together ... viapractices of engagement and self-reflexivity"(p. 686). Together, these form a way of inter- + Voice, Reflexivity, andrupting, disrupting, and transforming "pure"presence into a disturbing, fluid, partial, and Postmodern Textualproblematic presence-a poststructural and de- Representationcidedly postmodern form of discourse theory,hence textual revelation.Validity as an Texts have to do a lot more work these days rhanEthical Relationship they used to. Even as they :Ire charged by poststructuralists and postmodemisrs ro rer1ect As Lather (1993) points out, poststructural upon their representational practices, represen-forms for validities "bring ethics and epistemol- tational practices themselves become moreogy together" (p. 686); indeed, as Parker Palmer problematic. Three of the most engaging, but(1987) also notes, "every way of knowing con- painful, issues are the problem of voice, the sr:l-tains its own moral trajectory" (p. 24). Peshkin tus of reflexivity, and the problemarics ofreflects on Noddingss (1984) observation that postmodern/ poststructural textual represenra"the search for justification often carries us far- tion, especially as those problemarics are disther and farther from the heart of morality" (p. played in the shift toward narrative :1nd literary105; quoted in Peshkin, 1993, p. 24). The way in forms that directly and openly deal wirh humanwhich we know is most assuredly tied up with emotion.
  • 21. P.uadigmatic Controversies, Contradictions, and Emerging Confluences + ;83 Witho ut doubt, the authonal vo ice is r:1rely genu- inel y absent, o r even hidden ).3 Specific textual experiment:1tion can he lp; that is, co mposing l.C: tt h.1s co me ro me:1n many things ro differ- the poetry or plays of Laurel Richardson are.. i . rese.1 rchers. In former er:1s. the only appro- good examples--can help a researcher to o ver-~,:.Jte - o ice w:1s rhe "voice from nowhere"- co me the tendency to write in the distanced and=~" ? u re presence" of represemation, as abstracted voice of the disembodied "I." But such, .1 rhc:r e rms ir. As researchers bec:~me more writing exercises are hard work. This is also work_ ,ns..:tous of rhe abstracted realities their texts that is embedded in the pr:1ctices of reflexivity- ~~Jrc:J . rhev became simultaneously more con-... ,,u, ,[ uv ing readers "he:u" their infor- and narrativity, without which achieving a voice of (partial} truth is impossible. Jn :~- permirring readers to he:1r the exact rds (Jnd. occasionally, the paralinguistic~uc:s. rhe !Jpses. pauses, stops, st:~rts, reformu- Reflexivity Jtwns) ot rhe informams. Today voice can-non . esreciJlly in more participatory forms of Reflexivity is the process of retlecting criti- ese.1 rch. nor only having a real researcher- cally on the self as researcher, the "human as in-Jnd .1 researchers voice-in the text, but also strument" (Cuba & Lincoln, 1981}. It is, welc:mng rese:~rch participams speak for them- would assert, the critical subjectivity discussed~lves, either in text form or through plays, fo- early on in Reason and Rowans edited volumerums... town meetings," or other oral and per- Human Inquiry (1981}. It is a conscious experi-iorm.ince-oriented media or communication encing of the self as both inquirer and respon-iorms designed by research participants them- dent, as reacher and learner, as the one coming toselves. Performance texts, in particular, give an know the self within the processes of research it-cmorional immediacy to the voices of research- self.ers and research participants far beyond their Reflexivity forces us to come to terms not onlyown sires and locales (see McCall, Chapter 15, with our choice of research problem and withrhis volume}. those with whom we engage in the research pro- Rosanna Hertz (1997} describes voice as cess, but with our selves and with the multiple identities that represent the fluid self in the re- .1struggle to figure our how to present the au- search setting (Aicoff & Porter, 1993}. Shulamit rhor s self while simultaneously writing the re- Rein harz ( 1997}, for example, argues that we not spondents accounts and representing their o nly "bring the self to the field ... [we also] create >elves. Voice has multiple dim~nsions: First, the self in the field" (p. 3}. She suggests that al- there IS the voice ohhc ;wthor. Second, there is though we :.11 have many selves we bring with us, the presentatio n of rhe vo ices of one s respon- de nts within the text. A third dimension appears those selves fall into three categories: research- when the self is the subject of the inquirv.... based selves, brought selves (the selves that his - o1 e IS how authors express thcmsdves .;_,ithin torically, socially, and personally create our an ethnography. (pp. xi-xii) standpoints} , and situarionally created selves (p. 5}. Each of those selves comes into play inBur knowing how to express ourselves goes far the research setting and consequently has a dis-~ond the commonsense understanding of tinctive voice. Reflexivity-as well as the post-expressing ourselves." Generations of ethnog- structural and postmodern sensibilities concern-r:aphcrs rained in the "cooled-out, stripped- ing quality in qualitative research-demandsJoy,~ rhetoric" of positivist inquiry (Firestone, that we interrogate each of our selves regarding198 , ) ftn d tt d.1tttcuIt, 1f nor ne:~rly impossible, the ways in which research efforts :~reshaped andro ~lo- Late " t hemsel ves deliberately and staged around the binaries, contr:1dictions, andsqua re It h.111 t h e1r texts (even though, as - paradoxes that form our own lives. We mustc~ern [[ 98 8] has demonstrated finally and question our selves, too, regJrding h o w those
  • 22. : 3 -1 + PARADIGMS AND PERSPECTIVES IN TRANSITIONbinaries and paradoxes shape not only the iden- perhaps more complex. but just nne). Catherinetities called forth in the field and later in the Stimpson (InS) has observed:discovery processes of writing, but also ourinterJ.ctiOfls with respondents, in who we be- Like every gre:1t wo rJ . represenuttollJ s" is acome m them in the process of becoming to our- stew. A scr~m bl ed rr.cn u, it serves u p severalselves. 1 meanings at ~>n ee. For :1 rt: pn:sc nt:.Irion CJ.n be an image-visuJl, verbal, o r :JUrJI. ... : representa- Someone once char:1cterized qualitative re- tion c:m ~!so be a narrotivc. a sequence o f image$sean:h ~IS the twin processes of "writing up" :md ideas . . . . Or, a rcpresentatton c~n be rhc(field notes) and "writing down" (the narrative). product of ideology, that V schcml! for show- JStBut Clandinin and Connelly (1994) have made ing forth the world and justifyi ng its dc~lings.clec that this bitextual reading of the processes lr (p. 223)of qualitative rese:1rch is far too simplistic. Inbet, many texts are created in the process of en- One way to confront the dangerous ill usionsgaging in fieldwork. As Richardson (1994, (and their underlying ideol ogies) th:~ t texts may1997 ; see :1lso Ch:1pter 36, this volume) makes foster is through the cre:~ti o n o f new texts thatcle:1r, writing is not merely the tr:1nscribing of break boundaries; that move from the cemer tosome re:1lity. Rather, writing-of all the texts, the margins to comment upon and decenter thenotes, presentations, and possibilities-is also a center; that forgo closed, bounded worlds forprocess of discovery: discovery of the subject those more open-ended and less conveniently(and sometimes of the problem itself) and dis- encompassed; that transgress the bo undaries ofcovery of the self. conventional social science; and that seek to cre- There is good news and bad news with the ate a social science about human life rather thanmost contemporary of formulations. The good on subjects.news is that the multiple selves-ourselves and Experiments with how to do this have pro-our respondents-of postmodern inquiries may duced "messy texts" (Marcus & Fischer, 1986).give rise to more dynamic, problematic, Messy texts are not typographic nightmares (al-open-ended, and complex forms of writing and though they may be typographically nonlinear);rep resentation. The bad news is that the multi- rather, they are texts that seek to break the bi-ple selves we create and encounter give rise to nary between science and literature, to portraymore dynamic, problematic, open-ended, and the contradiction and truth of human experi-complex forms of writing and representation. ence, to break the rules in the service o f sho wing, even partially, how real human beings cope with both the eternal verities of human existence andPostmodern Textual the daily irritations and tragedies of living thatRepresentations existence. Postmodern representatio ns search out and experiment with narratives rhat expand There are two dangers inherent in the con- the range of understanding, voice, :~nd the sto-ventional texts of scientific method: that they ried variations in human experience. As much asmay lead us ro believe the world is rather simpler they are social scientists, inquirers J lso becometh:1n it is, and that they may reinscribe enduring storytellers, poets, and playwrights, experi-forms of historical oppression. Put another way, menting with personal narratives, first-p ersonwe are confronted with a crisis of authority acco unts, reflexive interrogatio ns, and decon-(which tells us the world is "this way" when per- struction of the forms of tyranny embedded inhaps it is some other way, or many other ways) representational practices (see Richardson,and a crisis of representation (which serves to si- Chapter 36, this volume; Tierney & Lincoln,lence those whose lives we appropriate for our 1997).social sciences, and which may also serve subtly Representation may be arguabl y the mostto re-create this world, rather than some other, open-ended of the controversies surro unding
  • 23. t:m1 digmatic Controversies, Contradictions, and Emerging Confluences + 5
  • 24. 186 + PARADIGMS AND PERSPECTIVES IN TRAL"SITION Notes Alcoff, L., & Potter, E. (Eds.). (199.3 ). Femmist epistemologies. New York: Rourledge. Alpern, S., Antler,]., Perry, E. L. & Sco bie. I. W l. There are several versions of critical the- (Eds.). (1992). The challenge of/eminist biog-ory, including classical critical theory, which is raphy: Writing the lives of modem Americanmost closely related to neo-Marxist theory; women. Urbana: Cniversity of l!linois Press.postpositivist formulations, which divorce Babbitt, S. ( 1993 ). Feminism and objective mter-themselves from Marxist theory but are positiv- ests: The role of transformation experiencesist in their insistence on conventional rigor crite- in rational deliberation. In L. Ale off & E. Pot-ria; and postmodernist, poststrucruralist, or ter (Eds.), Feminist epistemologies (pp.co nstructivist-oriented varieties. See, for in- 245-264). New York : Routledge.stance, Fay (1987), Carr and Kemmis (1986),and Lather (1991) . See also in this volume Bernstein, R. J. (198.3). Beyond obJectivismKemmis and McTaggart (Chapter 22) and and relativism: Science, hermeneutics, andKincheloe and Mclaren (Chapter 10). praxis. Oxford: Blackwell. 2. For a clearer understanding of how Best, S., & Kellner, D. (1997). The postmodernmethods came to stand in for paradigms, or how turn. New York: Guilford.our initial (and, we thought, quite clear) posi- Bloland, H. (1989). Higher education and hightions came to be misconstrued, see Laney (1993) anxiety: Objectivism, relativism, and ironv.or, even more currently, Weiss (1998, esp. p. journal of Higher Education, 60, 519-543.268). Bloland, H. (1995). Postmodernism and higher 3. For example, compare this chapter with, education. journal of Higher Education, 66,say, Richardsons (Chapter .36) and Ellis and 521-559.Bochners (Chapter 28), where the authorial Bradley,]., & Schaefer, K. ( 1998). The uses andvoices are clear, personal, vocal, and interior, in- misuses of data and models. Thousand Oaks,teracting subjectivities. Although some col- CA: Sage.leagues have surprised us by correctly identifying Carr, W. L., & Kemmis, S. (1986). Becoming crit-which chapters each of us has written in given ical: Education, knowledge and action re-books, nevertheless, the style of this chapter search. London: Falmer.more closely approximates the more distanced Carspecken, P. F. ( 1996). Critical ethnography informs of "realist" writing than it does the inti- educational research: A theoretical and prac-mate, personal "feeling tone" (to borrow a tical guide. New York: Rourlt:dge.phrase from Studs Terkel) of other chapters. Clandinin, D. J., & Connelly, F. M. (1994). Per-Voices ::tlso arise as a function of the material be- sonal experience methods. In N. K. Denzining covered. The material we chose as most im- & Y. S. Lincoln (Eds.), Handbook of qualita-portant for this chapter seemed to demand a less tive research (pp. 413-427) . Thousand Oaks,personal tone, probably because there appears to CA: Sage.be much more "contention" than calm dialogue Denzin, N. K., & Lincoln, Y. S. (Eels.). (1994).concerning these issues. The "cool" tone likely Handbook of qualitative research. Thousandstems from our psychological response to trying Oaks, CA: Sage.to create a quieter space for discussion aroundcontroversial issues. What can we say? Ellis, C., & Bochner, A. P. (Eds.). (1996). Com- posing ethnography: Alternative forms of qualitative writing. Walnut Creek, CA: AltaMira. Enerstvedt, R. (1989). The problem of validity References in social science. In S. Kvale (Ed.), Issues of validity in qualitative research (pp. 135 -173). Lund, Sweden : Studenrlitterarur.Addelson, K. P. (1993 ). Knowers/doers and their Fay, B. (1987). Critical social science. Ithaca, NY: moral problems. In L. Alcoff & E. Potter Cornell University Press. (Eds.), Feminist epistemologies (pp. Firestone, W. (1987). Meaning in method: 265-294). New York: Routledge. The rhetoric of quantitative and qualitative
  • 25. i.rr.rdigmatic Controversies, Contradictions, t.m d Emerging Confluences :-t ...