Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Classic Grounded Theory Community and The Drugless Trip

1. Classic Grounded Theory Community

I was surprised when I attended the Grounded Theory Seminar at how cordial and supportive the folks were there.

I have been feeling mired in coding over the last while and finally decided to reach out for help. I was able to connect with a newly-minted Ph.D. who had just finished his dissertation under Barney Glaser, and another scholar who is trying to fit mentors with classic GT learners like myself.

This afternoon, Newly-Minted Ph.D. called me from half-way across the country and spent 15 minutes on the phone with me, essentially assuring me that I am going about the process in the right way: messily!

I am so thankful for this classic GT community. I have a strong feeling I will enter into this community in fuller measure in time to come.

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2. The Drugless Trip

Judith Holton (2007) in her chapter entitled The Coding Process and Its Challenges, in the Sage Handbook of Grounded Theory, explained the difference between non-classic GT and classic GT:

"Various scholars within the qualitative paradigm [read: non-classic GT] have put forth strategies and guidelines for the coding process (citations). By comparison, the procedures espoused by classic grounded theorists may initially appear loose and perhaps even messy or confusing. These procedures as originally developed by Glaser and Strauss (1967) and extensively elaborated in Glaser's subsequent work (1978, 1992, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2005; Glaser & Holton, 2004) do require the researcher to grapple with both chaos and control. The chaos is in tolerating the uncertainty and subsequent regression of not knowing in advance and of remaining open to what emerges through the diligent, controlled, often tedious application of the method's synchronous and iterative processes of line-by-line coding, constant comparison for interchangeability of indicators, and theoretical sampling for core emergence and theoretical saturation. This discipline is simultaneously complemented by requiring the theorist to remain open to the innate creativity in preconscious processing of conceptual ideation and theoretical integration; a creativity characterized by the exhilaration of eureka sparks of discovery; what Glaser (1978, 1998) calls the drugless trip [emphasis added]" (p. 273).

So, I need to let go and embrace the chaos. Only then will I discover the eureka of the drugless trip.

Now stare long and deep into the picture below...

3 comments:

Fajita said...

If you ever put annother image like that psychodelic thingy you just did, I'm coming after you.

Lonely Dissertator said...

Did you feel your eyes throbbing out of your head?

freakish said...

o my god i don't like the feeling i felt cheated ;) my eyes poped out already ;(