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Discourse Analysis. If you are having trouble making sense of your interview data, you might want to consider employing what researchers call “discourse analysis.” Below are some notes from Dryzek (1997)

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discourse analysis

Discourse Analysis

If you are having trouble making sense of your interview data, you might want to consider employing what researchers call “discourse analysis.” Below are some notes from Dryzek (1997)

Dryzek, John S.(1997) Politics of the Earth: Environmental Discourses. New York: Oxford University Press.

Chap. 1 Making Sense of Earth’s Politics: A Discourse Approach

“A discourse is a shared way of looking at the world. Its adherents will therefore use a particular kind of language when talking about events, which in turn rests on some common definitions, judgements, assumptions, and contentions.” (p. xii).

A discourse approach is useful because language matters: “…the way we construct, interpret, discuss, and analyze environmental problems has all kinds of consequences” (p. 9). Consider these changes in meaning over time:

Marshy lands = swamps to wetlandsFrontier to be subdued to wilderness to be protected and cherishedAustrialia and New Zealand: European colonization and “Acclimatisation Societies” what was once sought after as desirable exotics are now forms of biological pollution to be erradicated.“Population” only 200 years old as a conceptWhales as creatures with rights

discourse analysis2
Discourse Analysis

Source: Dryzek 1997, p. 20

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Flowchart Showing the Typical Process of Content Analysis Research from The Content Analysis Guidebook
  • Sites dedicated to content analysis
  • Text Analysis InfoHarald Klein's site provides useful information regarding software for text analysis.
  • The Content Analysis Guidebook OnlineAn extensive site that supports users of Neuendorf's The Content Analysis Guidebook.
  • Resources Related to Content Analysis and Text AnalysisMatthias Romppel's rather large and useful site.
  • Content AnalysisThe Writing Center at Colorado State University offers an online primer.
  • Practical Resources for Assessing and Reporting Intercoder Reliability in Content Analysis Research ProjectsMatthew Lombard (Temple U.), Jennifer Snyder-Duch (Carlow College), and Cheryl Campanella Bracken (Cleveland State U.) maintain this most useful resource.
  • Content Analysis in Politcal Research Kenneth Janda (Northwestern U.) offers resources for political scientists.
  • Video Content Analysis HomepageRainer Lienhart provides useful information regarding computerized video/audio analysis.
  • Content Analysis and Qualitative ResearchPart of G. David Garson's online statistics notebook (click here to visit the notebook's top page).
  • Analysis of Media Texts: Content AnalaysisA page of links to content analysis resources.