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Investigating the form and dynamics of crisis episodes in early adulthood: the application of a composite qualitative method

Smith, Jonathan A. and Robinson, O. (2010) Investigating the form and dynamics of crisis episodes in early adulthood: the application of a composite qualitative method. Qualitative Research in Psychology 7 (2), pp. 170-191. ISSN 1478-0887.

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14780880802699084

Abstract

This study investigates the experiences and processes that characterise crisis episodes occurring between the ages of 25 and 40. The methodology is a composite of Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (Smith & Eatough 2006) and Miles and Huberman's Interactive Model (1994). Analysis of interview data found a four-phase pattern in all the crisis episodes sampled, starting with a precrisis description of an externally controlled identity and being stuck in a domestic and/or vocational role that is no longer wanted but is maintained out of passivity or obligation. This is followed by the peak of the crisis, which is characterised by an emotional separation from that role and/or relationship and by a confused and undefined identity. The third phase involves exploration of new intrinsically motivated activities and an experimental search through alternative self-conceptions and activities. The fourth postcrisis phase brings a new commitment to a life structure in which identity, life roles, and social contexts are in equilibrium, and an enhanced sense of consent and control. The study demonstrates that the careful hybridisation of qualitative approaches is a fruitful enterprise, while the resultant four-phase model is proposed for further validation with other samples and demographics.

Item Type: Article
Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Composite qualitative method, crisis, early adulthood, identity, transition
School or Research Centre: Birkbeck Schools and Research Centres > School of Science > Psychological Sciences
Depositing User: Administrator
Date Deposited: 16 Dec 2010 14:14
Last Modified: 17 Apr 2013 12:19
URI: http://eprints.bbk.ac.uk/id/eprint/2581

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