Watson C (2007) Small stories, positioning analysis, and the doing of professional identities in learning to teach. Narrative Inquiry, 17 (2), pp. 371-389. https://doi.org/10.1075/ni.17.2.11wat
Interest in the narrative construction of identities has become widespread in social research. Much of this research focuses on the grander narratives we tell about ourselves, the big retrospectives elicited from interviews. However, if identification is conceived as an ongoing performance accomplished locally in and through everyday interactions then it is the narratives that emerge in this context that become the focus of interest. "Small stories" are the ephemeral narratives emerging in such everyday, mundane contexts, which it is argued constitute the performance of identities and the construction of self. Drawing on Bamberg's Positioning Analysis, this paper examines the construction of identities in a "small story" told by two student teachers, showing how this enables the participants to make claims about their developing professional identities. The paper also examines positioning analysis and its ability to link these locally produced identities to wider discourses.
Small stories; Student teachers; Teaching; Narrative; Positioning analysis; Identity; Professional identity
Narrative Inquiry: Volume 17, Issue 2