Title: Family narratives and identity navigation in social design: a method of analysis
Authors: Eva Knutz; Thomas Markussen; Valentijn Visch; Ed Tan
Addresses: Department of Design and Communication, University of Southern Denmark, 6000 Kolding, Denmark ' Department of Design and Communication, University of Southern Denmark, 6000 Kolding, Denmark ' Industrial Design Engineering, Delft Technical University, 2600 AA Delft, The Netherlands ' University of Copenhagen, 2300 Copenhagen S, Denmark; University of Amsterdam, 1018 WV Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Abstract: The aim of this paper is to show how an interdisciplinary merging of social design and narrative theory can increase understanding of how vulnerable families navigate personal and shared identities. We draw upon results from a design research project that introduces board games in prisons to help children develop bonds with their incarcerated fathers. In our case study we offer a method of analysis that enables design researchers to delve into the complex field of identity navigation. Further, we offer a focused reflection arguing that the vulnerability of these families can be conceived as family identities being broken or challenged. We attempt to show that identity is constructed through family members' co-authoring of family narratives, which manifest themselves in different formats such as 'master narratives' and 'counter narratives'. Design research has the potential to examine identity formations by applying narrative theory in practice.
Keywords: social design; social games; identity navigation; family narratives; constructive design research.
Journal of Design Research, 2020 Vol.18 No.5/6, pp.388 - 409
Accepted: 17 Mar 2021
Published online: 02 Nov 2021 *