Chapter 3: ‘Adventures through alterity’: Judith Butler and methodology
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While Judith Butler’s performative theory of gender has had a considerable impact on feminist thinking in management and organization studies, the methodological possibilities opened up by her work have yet to be fully explored. Yet Butler’s ontological and epistemological starting points have important implications for research design and practice. With this in mind, this chapter brings together insights from different phases of Butler’s writing, making connections between her evolving thematic and theoretical interests. These are read as both opening up a series of methodological possibilities and as making a methodological proposition. The chapter explores some of the ways in which adopting a Butlerian approach implies starting from the premise that the aim of research is to affect an ontological and epistemological ‘undoing’, one that reinstates our interdependency, based on an ethics of relationality and a politics of assembly. What this means, how and why we might go about it, and what challenges as well as opportunities such an approach raises, are its main focus.

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