chapter  2
Enabling narratives in the ‘unhomely’ field of higher education research
WithWendy Green
Pages 15

The author aims to provide a critical account of the place of narrative in the story of higher education (HE) research, from its marginalized beginnings to its recent emergence as a methodology of interest. He also explores some of the barriers narrative researchers have experienced, and still experience, in HE, before finishing with some thoughts about how one can sustain narrative research and narrative researchers in his still 'unhomely' field. HE research makes particular demands on all of those who enter the field, because people are so immersed in the subject of his research. Malcolm Tights' comprehensive analysis of submissions to key HE journals, along with Haggis' analysis of several key higher education journals, shows the current epistemological boundaries of the field. Analysis of HE journals, suggests one can productively consider the field of HE as a community of practice (CoP), in that it has acted as a 'social container', binding together members through 'joint enterprise', 'mutuality' and 'shared repertories'.