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Tell these Stories to your Children: Narratives in Science as Tales of Wilderness and Civilisation

Abstract:

Empiricism, still the dominant approach to the study of the world, holds that its tools of inquiry help a researcher overcome biases and mythological constructs that had formed the backbone of nonempiricist epistemology. An examination of the Darwinian narrative however reveals that the premises behind the concepts of evolutionary science and the postulates that drive the logic of scientific exploration merely recount stories of wilderness and civilisation, thereby structuring the narratives according to the political interests that shape knowledge and provide flesh to the interpretations of other human and non-human people’s lives. This paper examines the effects of civilised postulates of domestication on the  process of “interviewing” and explores the possibility of engaging in an exchange of knowledge from a wild perspective, where the interlocutors remain with their own purpose, not submitted to the civilised narrative that is driven by plot, and hence by a chrono-logical structuration.

The 29th Annual
Qualitative Analysis Conference
:
Cultures of Narrative/Narratives of Culture

Memorial University of Newfoundland, St. John’s Campus
St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada
June 20-22, 2012

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