8.05 Methodological Considerations

e) Ethics:

One has a responsibility to the relationships formed. This is conventionally realised by allowing the subjects access to the draft report with a 'right of reply'. In practice I have found that reading long academic texts is burdensome to most people, especially when they are offered in draft form and is not an adequate reply to this question of ethical responsibility.

The central ethical question may be as to whether the PhD ritual offers up vulnerable subjects as sacrificial victims of knowledge - a knowledge that would then be used by the state to better control such groups. In the light of the previous theoretical discussion of the social pathologies produced by the systemic invasion of the lifeworld, we might take this seriously. If the authority of this theory carries enough weight - and a PhD study is a part of this systemic invasion - then all I can offer as a defence is that the object I produce will not be a palatable or reductive representation but rather one that resists closure and is quaquaversal (an Exploding Galaxy word meaning to move outwards in all directions).