Dramaturgical Representations of Teaching as Social Drama in Educational Settings: Opening a New Dimension in Positioning Analysis
Since Davies and Harré first introduced Positioning Theory in the social sciences, in the 1990’s, there has been much interest shown in the scalability of the applications from the analysis of the dynamics of person-to-person encounters to the analysis of the discourses by which large-scale social entities position themselves in relation to others; and in the applications that cross the boundaries between different disciplines. What about middle-sized institutions like schools? In this cross-discipline, longitudinal study of a medium-scale social organisation the application of positioning theory is presented in the analysis of the autobiographical narrative accounts of multiple participants in the early socialization of networked technologies in a Melbourne school, in the 1990’s. In proposing a dramaturgical representation rendered as a drama-text which highlights the daily activities of teachers, I argue that a new perspective is afforded the researcher/reader: one of transformation of identity and of institutional re-structuring as an ‘imagined’ drama. I will discuss the key features of the imagined drama: structure; creating and juxtaposing verbatim dialogues; the narrator; and positioning analysis. In this realm of possibility I argue that dramaturgical representations and the re-design of the conventional positioning triad as a positioning pyramid open a new dimension in positioning analysis affording a contribution to Positioning Theory research. While simultaneously affording a co-constructed research methodology in which practicing teachers as teacher-researchers and educational researchers are mutually committed to research in improving practice in schools and in teacher research.