rules of the research game:

This work is written in a research context which includes:

  • an increasingly urgent call for a different way of thinking (Stirling, 2007) or a shift in consciousness (Stirling, 2003; Berry & Tucker, 2006) in the face of intensifying ecological crises
  • a desire for "requisite variety" including epistemological and ontological difference (Hart, 2000, p. 37; Guba & Lincoln, 2005)
  • requests for inclusion of voices from the margins in the production of research texts (Kumashiro, 2002, 2004; Lather, 2001, 2006; Lather & Smithies, 1997; Tuhiwai Smith, 1999)
  • requests for inclusion of the voices of non-human Others in research (and other) texts (Abram, 2006; Bell, 2003; Bell & Russell, 2000; Fawcett, 2000; Fudge, 2002; Russell, 2005)

In order to meet these 'requests,' the rules of the game need to change. This dissertation represents a methodology, methods, and a representational form that supports researching across socially constructed human/nature/spirit boundaries. My primary thesis is epistemological in nature and based on the ontological assumption that there is much more to the universe than material reality. The research approaches are based on the assumptions that humans would be well-served by finding ways to (re)learn, and practice, the multiple languages with which the (animate) Earth speaks (Harvey, 2006b).