Research 4: submission of a working draft

I submit a word document with embedded audio and ten appendices to my Research tutor.

There are a few notes to accompany this submission:

  • Case studies, a/v materials and word count. The dissertation word limit is 5000 words. The Research handbook suggests a study with primary research, which I took serious and present the work primarily as Practice as Research (PaR), it features also forms of narration that fall between theory/fiction and creative writing. The word count even for a simple primary research study is severely limited. My desire to trace divergence with different formats runs up against that limitation even more.
  • My solution to this are several strategies:
    • A series of appendices was early on discussed, as satellite objects, I take Kate Zambreno’s (2018) Appendix Project as inspiration.
    • I move some of my theory discussion into a video narration
    • I present three case studies (verge/weed, Dreaming the staircase and Stromverteilen), they each relate to large work series with BoW, the latter, Stromverteilen, effectively becoming an overall container. Each of these series have an attendant padlet space which operates as object for the Research. I currently present the written narrations for each case in the dissertation but also include an audio file narrating these. I would like to consider these quotes rather than part of the word count.
    • To a lesser degree this also applies to a few sections from my research folder where I quote my own notes.
  • The above gives some space to explore the research findings relating to the questions, this still feels cursory (I offer a series of routes through enquiries along with two longer discussions of reach/resonance and near space as key findings). I include a list of resources and materials in which I provide more insight into the research processes and the BoW.

Of course the above restrictions budge up against my existing writing practice across these registers: research articles of around 8000 words or in fact a PhD thesis where a 5000 words dissertation will always feel superficial and limited. And yet, I feel this working draft does work, it provides a frame and focus onto the questions that animate the PaR and it offers a series of original insights. What forms and publics these may seek beyond the assessors is a different question, which in part can also be attended to in SYP.

The early discussions around the glossary as well as satellite objects and excess has found a form and expression that seems fitting to me. It allows for different registers and media to circle in different orbits around the text.

There is a lot more in the reference (both artistic works and academic writing) that is not expressed in fullness, Friedrich Kittler’s work remains salient and solely features in a footnote. Relating Laura Marks sensuous theory to Kittler seems promising and is not articulated in writing (though perhaps in practice).

That this is completed almost 12 months late feels like a considerable achievement. I pressed pause at the start of the pandemic, then a combination of winter wave and family illness pushed me further away from the academic work while generating far more practical work (while all the same the loss of distance to and detachment from seemed to ever increase).

I am excited that it is at this stage, I look forward to the discussion of some of the findings and ways to hone and sharpen the written contribution for the Research module.

There are two things remaining ahead of the tutorial:

  1. I want to provide too an update on my BoW padlet (https://oca.padlet.org/gesa492645/rthyyn7qr5iz1zak) to account for the works that have developed alongside the writing of the text.
  2. Stromverteilen as padlet has developed from a single (and naive, first encountered) site to effectively function as portfolio for the whole BoW (https://oca.padlet.org/gesa492645/8vgddo2olqqwjib1).

I am not currently attaching the draft to this post, if you are interested in reading: send me a message and I am more than happy to send along.

2 thoughts on “Research 4: submission of a working draft”

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