Multimodal life history narrative: Embodied identity, discursive transitions and uncomfortable silences

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I draw together multimodal and creative art practices with sociological and discursive research frameworks to detail how multimodal interviewing facilitates communication of individual narratives. I offer a route for researching how embodied self-production emerges by asking: What can be learnt from analysing the context and process of narrative accounts rather than the content? Consideration is given to how a drawn visual line influences the narrative progress by inviting diverse, active and embodied engagement, while highlighting issues that participants prioritise. Attention is also given to how selfrecognition and the production of identity become apparent in moments that punctuate a narrator’s story-telling. These moments are identified as discursive transitions and include switches in style or topic of conversation, expressions of emotion, pauses and extended silences. These transitions are conceptualised as examples of a ‘structuring presence’ within a narrative, and I explore how these are central to the embodied production of selfidentity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)109-131
Number of pages23
JournalNarrative Inquiry
Issue number1
Early online date21 Jul 2017
Publication statusPublished - 3 Aug 2017


  • multimodal narratives
  • discursive transitions
  • silence
  • embodied identity
  • Silence
  • Discursive transitions
  • Embodied identity
  • Multimodal narratives


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