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Towards a Pluralist Methodological Approach: Combining Performativity Theory, Discursive Psychology and Theories of Affect

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Butler's performativity theory has had an impact on many disciplines, but its use in conjunction with discourse analysis has not been developed. This article introduces a pluralist methodological framework that combines performativity theory with discursive psychology, itself a variant of discourse analysis. By exploring critiques of discursive psychology, such as the perspective of cultural psychoanalysis, the article delineates complementarities between Butler's performative approach and discursive psychology. However, it also argues that theories of affect, and particularly Ahmed's performative approach, provide further insights and should be used in conjunction with Butler's performativity theory and discursive psychology. By critically engaging with performativity theory, discursive psychology, cultural psychoanalysis, and Ahmed's approach to affect, the article puts into dialogue various bodies of literature to construct a pluralist methodological framework.
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Keywords: affect; discourse analysis; methodological pluralism; performativity; psychoanalysis

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Culture, Media and Creative Industries, King's College London, London, UK

Publication date: April 1, 2011

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