Watching to see until it becomes clear to you: metaphorical mapping - a method for emergence

May. 20, 2008

Source: International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, Volume 21 Issue 3, 2008, p. 221-233.

Searching for a methodology that would allow the author to 'see' across worldviews and articulate them both was the academic challenge of investigating learning ideology across Canadian and Aboriginal worldviews with Aboriginal Nuu-chah-nulth Elders.

A mode of inquiry was required permitting the author to hold a Euro-heritage and an Aboriginal heritage in a bi-cultural balance as experienced by a participant in both. She employed a life-history technique situating herself in the cross-cultural context of her experience in both heritages.

Using her personal terms of address in both cultures as metaphors to establish a common bi-cultural ground against which her trajectory could remain visible, the author describes the development of her ability to follow the direction of the elders to 'watch until it becomes clear.' The method employs what Lakoff and Johnson have termed metaphorical mapping to take a snapshot of the activity that the author has previously described as phenomenological orienteering.

Updated: Jul. 01, 2008