The artisan or the hunter behind the footprints. Reflexions on the qualitative analysis of data

Within the social sciences, methodological debates contribute to the understanding of social research. This paper discusses one way of understanding the role of the investigator in relation to the approach and analysis of the object/subject of study. The objective is to question the use of the researcher's metaphor as a craftsman. This image appears in the 1950s in order to explain the creativity required by the research process and qualitative data analysis. However, the artisan's metaphor represents a deductive approximation of the researcher to the subject/object of study. On the contrary, the qualitative analysis is oriented by inductive procedures. The metaphor of the hunter after the prey is then proposed as a resource with a paradigmatic and epistemological consistency that contributes to the understanding and training in the qualitative research.

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