Opie, A. (1997) 'Teams as Author:
Narrative and Knowledge Creation in case Discussions in Multi-Disciplinary Health
Sociological Research Online, vol. 2, no. 3, <http://www.socresonline.org.uk/2/3/filename>
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Received: 18/4/97 Accepted: 1/9/97 Published: 30/9/97
...series of representations. These representations are themselves dispersed in time and space within the complex organization of the clinic. They are inspected, interpreted and reported by different cadres of specialized personnel. ... , one should think of the modern clinic as producing a disembodied body. ..., a body ... divorced from the body of the patient. The body may therefore be read at different sites ... It [the patient's body] is, however, one among may possible versions of the body that may be assembled in the modern clinic. The patient thus may have a multiple existence within the clinic. ..., the various fragmentary aspects of the patient and his or her body are brought together under the auspices of the case. (Atkinson, 1995: p. 89).
I have sought to suggest that this value attached to narrativity in the representation of real events arises out of a desire to have real events display the coherence, integrity, fullness, and closure of an image of life that is and can only be imaginary. The notion that sequences of real events present the formal attributes of the stories we tell about imaginary events could only have its origin in wishes, daydreams, reveries. Does the world really present itself to perception in the form of well-made stories, with central subjects, proper beginnings, middles and ends, and a coherence that permits us to see "the end" in every beginning? Or does it present itself more in the forms that the annals and chronicles suggest, either as mere sequence without beginning or end or as sequences of beginnings that only terminate and never conclude? And does the world, even the social world, ever really come to us as already narrativized, already "speaking itself" from beyond the horizon of our capacity to make scientific sense of it? Or is the fiction of such a world, a world capable of speaking itself and of displaying itself as a form of a story, necessary for the establishment of that moral authority without which the notion for a specifically social reality would be unthinkable .... Can we ever narrativize without moralizing?' White (1981: p. 1)
Team Reviews Transcripts
Team Reviews Transcripts
2 The permeability of the line between 'fact' and 'fiction' is emphasised in Korobkin's (1996) discussion of the way in which popular TV court dramas, movies and novels have come to shape the conduct of 'real' courtroom battles.
3 I have not introduced the community teams' discussions into this paper because the brevity of the review of each user. Team 2 reviewed approximately 60 users in between 30-35 minutes; in Team 1, the discussion often focused on priority setting for assessment and rehabilitation or respite beds, and the accompanying organisational logistics.
4 His narrative about the meeting concludes on administrative and inter-organisation issues, an emphasis picked up by the next speaker. In any group setting, what is spoken last is more likely to be taken up making it correspondingly more difficult for others to reflect back on earlier commentaries. Moreover, the issues about the transfer are of immediate concern to the team because if things work out, then the problem will no longer be their's, ie, there is a certain pragmatism about their approach. Other attempts to raise issues relating to the team's interaction with the guardians are met with a focus shift or a termination of the discussion, and although CP3 in the 5th Review, picks up Miles' phrase about the guardians' significance as advocates, he does so in a somewhat belittling manner.
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