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Locating theory in research: opening a conversation
chapterposted on 2018-01-01, 00:00 authored by John Quay, Jennifer Bleazby, Steven Stolz, Maurizio Toscano, Scott Webster
This introductory chapter is specifically intended to support those newer to research, such as graduate researchers, by offering a propaedeutic – a teaching orientated introduction – to help scaffold a way into the multifaceted conversation about theory and research that unfolds in the chapters to come. For this reason, we have designed the first chapter around a series of analogies between researching and catering. It may appear incongruous to bring researching – which most would consider to be a highbrow and specialized enterprise – together with the seemingly commonplace, everyday task of catering a shared meal. However, this everydayness is valuable because it supports the notion of “‘carrying over’ – metapherein” (Arendt, 1978, p. 103) from something familiar to something seemingly more complex. The resulting juxtaposition assists in making visible what is commonly taken for granted. Positioning both researching and catering as inquiries, and drawing correspondences between them on this basis, supports improved comprehension of the nature of researching and specifically the place of theory in education research.