The Killer Rabbit

With all these discussions of methodology going on in TUWSNBN and me having to sit through an entire day of “methods (methodology) reflection seminar”, I have been speculating about some guidelines one can follow.

For instance, if, while out searching for the Holy Grail, you are warned of a manic rabbit in a cave nearby, your options are:

· Option 1: Leg it immediately in the opposite direction (or, in IR terms, go publish your works in Alternatives or journals with names so obscure no one in the field would have heard of them)
· Career prediction: Rabbit is likely to bite off arms, chew them up and spit them out. (or, you will most likely have no career in the vicinity of the rabbit)

· Option 2: Attempt to point out the bloodthirsty nature of the rabbit. Or, taunt it. This could lead to different scenarios:

· Scenario 1: Rabbit will not acknowledge its bloodthirsty nature but is willing to listen to you (Or, your methodology, though seemingly daft, is a methodology and, as such, should be heard)
· Career prediction: possibility of creating knowledge out of differing positions. Dialogic interaction possible. Perhaps. Depending on the rabbit (and you)

· Scenario 2: Bloodthirsty? What is that? (methodology? Positionings? Bah. Rabbit is unconcerned about what you are talking about)
· Career prediction: Applied work is what matters. Development, conflict resolution would be suitable fields to play about in.

· Scenario 3: Rabbit will admit this is how things are and always have been and always will be and you'd better become bloodthirsty too to be able to get on (Convert! Convert! Convert!)
· Career prediction: give in and publish in statistically oriented journals. Start talking about statistical inferences and hypothesis testing.

· Scenario 4: After much discussion, you realise you are bloodthirsty too. You are just not acknowledging it. The whole world is bloodthirsty (universalism rules)
· Career prediction: either you work with this assumption and yet do your own thing (difficult since rabbit is about to repress/convert other people during future interactions) or go to Option 3

· Option 3: You kill the rabbit and become it. This is when the Holy Hand Grenade comes in. Career prediction: you take over the cave and prevent others from passing by. Or, in other words, you create the new mainstream and take over IR (for people keen on asking me/telling me I have a political project with my research, this is it)


At 4/25/2005 12:26 AM, Blogger Elizabeth said...

Gimme the holy hand grenade! Gimme, gimme! Die, statistical analysis, die!


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