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Crafting Story Lines /Straddling Worlds. The Power of Words in Magic. Karen Locke [Karen Golden-Biddle] College of William and Mary. Crafting Story Lines. We develop and analytic insights grounded in our field engagement for particular audiences

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crafting story lines straddling worlds

Crafting Story Lines /Straddling Worlds

The Power of Words in Magic

Karen Locke [Karen Golden-Biddle]

College of William and Mary

crafting story lines
Crafting Story Lines
  • We develop and analytic insights grounded in our field engagement
  • for particular audiences
  • as representing something new and important to existing disciplinary thought
crafting story lines integrating two worlds
Crafting Story LinesIntegrating Two Worlds

Integrated into a narrative of knowledge gained

crafting a story line
Crafting A Story Line
  • Analytic insights grounded in field engagement will be compressed into one or two core empiricized ideas.
    • Fill in the blank… this study is about … (in one sentence!)
    • Qualitative data and the insights we develop are “rich,” multi-vocal, and messy
    • Crafting a story line means letting go of some of what we have learned in the field

The paper appears to pursue several goals at once 1. a description of a credit card collection organization 2. a theory of motivation for debt repayment 3. a set of your own and your respondents’ theories about the impact of collector tactics in influencing debtors 4. a theory about how collectors control their personal emotions…

crafting a story line1
Crafting a Story Line
  • Core empiricized ideas will be framed in terms of one or two phenomena and ideas of interest to a disciplinary audience.
    • Multivocal data point to number of potential theoretical explanations
    • Crafting a storyline means trying out and delimiting the theoretically relevant terms framing the core empiricized idea/s.

A limiting factor is that the exact contribution being pursued with these observations is not clearly articulated for the reader and perhaps not clear for the author. Especially unclear is the purpose being pursued for an audience of social scientists.

Sometimes in your writing, you say ‘professional identity’ and other times you seem to suggest that your study is about identity more generally…What I’m suggesting here is that you have a case that is relevant for professional identity, and your study itself should stick within these boundaries

crafting a story line2
Crafting a Story Line
  • What’s “new” here – does this storyline make a contribution?
    • “Newness” is accomplished in the literature review
    • Situating the study in the literature is not a given
    • Content and boundaries of “the literature” for a particular area or areas are not definitive
    • It is accomplished by a) active construction and shaping and b) problematization of the literature to be addressed so as to compose a space that invites contribution

Currently your work supports a lot of ideas that are fairly well-known (and thus the data illustrates another application of these ideas), as well as introducing other ideas that are less well understood, provocative, and I think important

The paper is very interesting, whether or not it significantly breaks new ground or pushes thinking with respect to either institutional theory research or impression management research is somewhat less clear

crafting story lines takes time and takes a community
Crafting Story Lines Takes Time and Takes a Community
  • Central and continuing part of actively working to understand the lived meanings of the worlds we study
  • Perlow – a senior colleague encouraged her to focus on and develop the metaphor of “time famine”
  • Feldman - while having a conversation with a colleague about her work, he “was pressing me on why did it matter… why did these routines matter.” In replying to this question, she said she began to realize how the stories of bulimia were a way of showing how people dealt with routines and the role of resources
  • Walsham – a positive audience reception to a conference paper proposing that actor network theory be integrated into information systems sparked the idea to bring together ANT and a field project
  • Pratt, Rock & Kaufman - Those reviewers were really useful because they said it’s not about multiple identities and socialization. Rather this is a great story about how professionals form their identity – this was a big figure ground flip
  • 1989 - 1992 – 1994/6
crafting story lines straddling worlds1
Crafting Story Lines / Straddling Worlds
  • What happened to our field experience in the writing?
  • Whose point of view did / do we take?
  • Problems in our theory / problems in their world?

Researchers examining time use … or

Corporate lawyers, investment bankers, computer programmers, and many other types of workers routinely work seventy or eighty hour weeks, putting in extra effort during particularly hectic times (Kidder, 1981; Schor, 1991). …. The purpose of this paper is to explore what I refer to as their time famine-their feeling of having too much to do and not enough time to do it and to question whether this famine must exist. (Perlow 1999)