This paper argues for engaging in unconventional/artistic representations in psychological research and presents step-by-step instructions to make use of a specific form of artistic representation, namely found poetry. Found poetry is a form of poetic inquiry that has been used in a variety of social science disciplines, primarily to amplify meaning making possibilities in qualitative research and to make research more accessible to the reader in various ways. Accessibility of research to the general public can be greatly enhanced by artful representations, particularly poetry, because of its immense socio-epistemic potential. The paper thus attempts to provide a guide on fashioning a found poem out of qualitative data. There are 5 steps in all, represented by the acronym BEST-M. These steps consist of the following: beginning data analysis, excavating evocative data nuggets, scooping out the data, tying the thread, and member checking. As an exemplar, an interview of a young adult participant and their experience of navigating lockdown imposed during the COVID-19 pandemic is used for demonstrating the implementation of the five steps that the paper puts forward.
found poetry, pandemic, lockdown, home, arts-based research
We would like to thank Dr. Preeti Kapur, who taught qualitative research to all three of us and inspired our passion for innovative research methodology, and who supervised the doctoral research of one of us in which found poetry played a significant role.
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Recommended APA Citation
Shashwati, S., Kansal, P., & Sethi, D. (2022). Exploring Artistic Representations in Psychological Research: A Step-by-Step Guide for Using Found Poetry. The Qualitative Report, 27(8), 1621-1637. https://doi.org/10.46743/2160-3715/2022.5446