PhD course on document analysis
They move around, between offices and people, between those who work on and produce documents, and those who read, use, and sometimes fight against them. Documents may contain writing, but also other forms of expression, such as maps, photographs, video, budgets, and models. All of which can provide rich entrances to studying social and material worlds. Through their movements across sites and agencies, documents furthermore contribute to producing cases, be it on environmental issues or historical controversies. Sometimes documents produce scandals, other times they secure that formal procedures are followed and that processes are kept fair and neutral. Documents are places we can seek out, and they are tools for making things happen.
The role they play in contemporary politics and research and their significance to the manufacturing of the past. A key part of the course will be to introduces the analytical method of practice-oriented document analysis (Asdal and Reinertsen 2022). This is a qualitative method that can be applied to all sorts of documents and that can easily be used in combination with other methodological approaches such as interviews and observation.
Conducting document analysis, asking how documents come about, what wider apparatuses they are part of and help build, how they move, and what they do can as such add very interesting aspects to a research project. With this course you will be introduced to the theoretical foundations for practice-oriented document analysis, as well as to practical, analytical tools for developing document analyses in your own research, and to different sites and practices for producing documents in Kalaallit Nunaat. Through fieldtrips, discussions, lectures, and social activities we hope to engender a creative space for thinking about document analysis in a broad and interdisciplinary student group.
The course will be organized collectively by Inge Høst Seiding (Ilisimatusarfik), Tone Huse (The Arctic University of Norway), and Kristin Asdal (University of Oslo) - assisted by Clement Scavenius Sonne-Schmidt (Ilisimatusarfik). Seiding, Huse and Asdal will also be lecturering in the course.