Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Death of a Companion Animal

A few hours before my 50th birthday, I wanted to to share one of my favorite article that I have written. It came out right before I turned forty. I am pleased to read it tonight;  there is a rawness, and honesty, and a vulnerability that feels good. I hope my current work has advanced methodologically, but still, I am happy with this article, as heart wrenching as it is to read.

I had already been working on expressive methods of qualitative research using poetry for a few years. The term poetic inquiry had not yet been popularized.  I had just discovered the term autoethnography; I had been writing personal narratives as means of understanding sociocultural phenomena for a while-learning about autoethnography was a revelation for me. It gave me a theoretic underpinning for what I was beginning to explore, and expanded my horizons of what was possible. In a very real sense, it gave me a scholarly community.  It helped me feel like I belonged. So,  I present to you the first article in which I evoked the term autoethnography, ten years ago. It feels appropriate tonight, my current dogs/soul mates in my lap, counting down the last hours of a decade filled with so very, very much life.

Autoethnographic poems and narrative reflections: A qualitative study of the death of a companion animal

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