Autopsy as a site and mode of inquiry: De/composing the ghoulish hu/man gaze

Neil Carey, Nikki Fairchild, Carol Taylor, Angelo Benozzo, Mirka Koro, Constanse Elmenhorst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (SciVal)
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For centuries the autopsy has been a key technology in Western culture for generating clinical/medical as well as cultural knowledge about bodies. This article hails the anato-medical autopsy as a generative trope and apparatus in reconfiguring Western humanist knowledge of bodies and bodies of knowledge and takes up the possibilities of working with the concept of autopsy in disrupting qualitative research methodology. In doing so, the article outlines and returns (to) a series of research-creation experiments assembled at an academic conference, which engaged with the challenges for social science knowledge laid out by Law’s (2004) After Method book. Our research-creation experiments centred autopsy as a theoretical-methodological gaze and apparatus for de-composing qualitative research methodology by engaging with post-humanist and new material feminist thinking.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)499-520
Number of pages22
JournalQualitative Research
Issue number4
Early online date31 May 2021
Publication statusPublished - 31 Aug 2022


  • Autopsy
  • autopsy-like research
  • decomposing the hu/man
  • new material feminism
  • post-human
  • research-creation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • History and Philosophy of Science


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