Commencing with a critique of codes of ethics based on the Statement of Principles of the International Federation of Social Work, we explore how a narrative approach to ethics might better serve the practice of social work. We argue that narrative both addresses some of the problems within current codes—such as their Western assumptions, lack of attention to the political role of the social worker, and the privileging of professional expertise—and aligns well with the values social work, being committed to social justice and diversity. Furthermore, we suggest that narrative, because it can operate at the individual, family, community, social, and discoursal levels can help us think ethically about how we construct narratives about, with, and for individual service users while remaining attentive to wider concerns of social justice. In so doing we are not seeking to construct a new code of ethics but to generate debate as to how social work ethics might be reconfigured.
In 2004 as many as 25% of teachers in Sweden, Denmark, and England were willing to leave their profession immediately; in the United States much effort has been invested in studying why teachers leave the profession. In this paper, four teachers who left the profession were interviewed from within the life- story tradition. In the narratives, which were rendered in a poetic style during the analysis, colleagues were mentioned both positively and negatively. The theme of having colleagues, and especially trust or mistrust between colleagues, was thus explored. The existence or nonexistence of lateral trust between teachers can be connected both to school development and to student learning outcomes.
This paper analyzes critical transitions in work careers and the methodological implications with regard to the study of risk biographies. It analyzes contemporary work trajectories taking into account a variety of fields and spheres of life that are articulated in different ways, events, perceptions, and representations that inspire people’s action. From a methodological perspective, the paper concentrates on the development and implementation of methods for the narrative analysis of biographical transitions. The criteria used for the risk biographies analysis assume that the actor is a sense-maker who thoughtfully and retrospectively interprets the shifts and the events of his/her life, defining their coherence with his/her own principles. Moreover, a narrative approach enables both a longitudinal analysis of the biographical transitions in life stories and the analysis of everyday transitions among paid work, unpaid work, and private life.
The “big” story of human progress has polarizing tendencies featuring the binary options of progress or decline. I consider human progress narratives in the context of everyday life. Analysis of the “little” stories from two narrative environments focusing on peak oil offers a more complex picture of the meaning and contours of the narrative. I consider the impact of differential blog site commitments to peak oil perspectives and identify five narrative types culled from two narrative dimensions. I argue that the lived experience complicates human progress narratives, which is no longer an either/or proposition
An unchallenged certainty often expressed in narratology discourse is that narrative, as a defining aspect of humanity, will remain fundamentally untouched by the emergence of new technologies. This essay challenges that assumption by considering the consequences for narrativity of the increasingly prevalent phenomenon of hyper attention, which appears to be related to online computer use. Specifically, this paper suggests that the emergent cognitive style of hyper attention is linked to both a declining ability and willingness to engage with traditional narrative structures and the rise of the antinarrative, a nonform that eschews such conventions as plot, character development, and resolution.