In this chapter I explore the proposition that positioned readings of crime fiction can usefully inform understandings of research methodology in social and educational enquiry.1 Like Cleo Cherryholmes (1993: 1), I want to break the ‘silence of the research literature on the textuality of research findings’ by attending to some of the ‘many ways to read and interpret and criticize’ research texts. Consider, for example, the intertextual continuities between research methods texts and crime fiction implied by variations on the word ‘investigate’ in the following passages:

Most qualitative researchers maintain a stance best described as ‘investigative’. Lancy 1993: 30

In undertaking educational research, the first problem is to find a problem to investigate.