Betraktninger om omsorg gjennom cafédialoger og tekster
After many years of experience from the field of preschool education and of being concerned with several issues related to children and families, we've come across many questions related to the term care. And, in particular, we've developed a curiosity as to what is meant by “sufficient care.” We've both wondered about all the different stories about care that we've encountered through our work. Parents told us stories about caring – children relayed stories about caring, colleagues and collaborators had many stories, all about caring, but often times very different. This intrigued us and we felt the need to “dig deeper,” “look into,” and “shed light on”. In our work, we've been inspired by poststructural theories, but we've chosen to use theories of varying foundations and perspectives. We felt we wanted to grab hold of some of the different stories that coexist with people where we live our lives. What dictates the stories about care that we carry with us, which are allowed to remain, and which are the ones that disappear? Some of the stories that we felt were given quite a bit of space were about care in connection to women. Care is often referred to as a “natural way” of being with children; “a natural way” that women are being with children (Ulla, 2007:4). Although many people recognize these stories that concern women and “the natural way of caring”, we believe that it's only one of many stories, and this is the basis for our research. To reach some of the stories about care, we had to have them told to us. We wanted to open up to as many impressions and expressions as possible, and therefore chose to let our work be inspired by the world of theater. We chose to call the participants in our group actors, our actions are called scenes or productions, and we've also used the concept of Theater sports when we've directed the scenes. As research workers we've taken on roles as both actors and directors, to a certain extent. We've experienced this as both opening and freeing for us in our research about care. We wanted the stories about care to direct and focus our work, and we've tried to remain as true as possible to the stories that were told. We tried to reach the stories about care through an approach using café dialogue. We believe the more correct terminology for this is a working tool, rather than a method. We invited five actors who participated in four different productions. The productions touched on different themes, but all the productions created texts or served as the basis for texts which all were concerned with observations about care. The different stories about care that have been told through dialogues in the scenes or as texts, has guided us in our choice of theory and subjects of immersion. Our focus has, to a great extent, been on the productions and the stories about care that have emerged, and the focus on theory, therefore, has not been given as much room. It has also been important for us in this work to approach the stories about care from an empirical, as opposed to theoretical, view. We've then elected to do critical readings and have been inspired by deconstruction in working with the texts after the scenes. Through this work, we've encountered even more observations concerning care, some of them recognizable, others completely new to us. We know that there still are, and always will be, stories and observations about care that see the light of day, and stories that experience never being told. In our work, we've tried to relay some, and we hope that our research can inspire others to tell their stories about care, so that as many care stories as possible can take their place and stay with us.
Myhrvold, Hanne Bekkelund