How to Capture and Present Complexity, Ambivalence and Ambiguity: Applying Dialogism in Social Science Research

Can-Seng Ooi

    Research output: Working paperResearch

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    Bakhtin was a literary theorist and was the widely acknowledged father of dialogism. This working paper shows how Bakhtin and dialogism can be used to capture complexity, ambivalence and ambiguity in the social world. In following the spirit of dialogism, I will refer to my own research experiences in tourism and art worlds, through which I will reveal my own inclinations – which can be read as biases – in
    my research knowledge production. Through the concept of genre, heteroglossia, polyphony and carnivalesque, dialogism allows social science researchers to identify and structure the forces of order and disruption in society. There are methodological consequences if one is to follow dialogism. Besides having to get deep into the empirical field, dialogism challenges by raising questions on the manner we collect data, the extent to which we can present a holistic analysis, the ways to engage alternative analytical interpretations and the approach to address a researcher’s own biases.
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationFrederiksberg
    PublisherDepartment of International Economics and Management, Copenhagen Business School
    Number of pages13
    Publication statusPublished - Apr 2013
    SeriesCLCS Working Paper Series


    • Dialogism
    • Genre
    • Heteroglossia
    • Polyphony
    • Carnivalesque
    • Social Science
    • Research methods
    • Tourism Studies
    • Art Worlds

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