Inquiring into Red/ Red inquiring – Published in Humanities 2013;2(2):253-277

This layered account of an inquiry into ‘red’ emerged out of a collective biography workshop. In the middle of the Wiltshire countryside, an international and interdisciplinary group of scholars gathered together to write and make other things and marks on paper that asked questions of, and into, the spaces between words, people, things and their environments. We did not set out to workshop or write into or paint ‘red’ but, rather, it was red that slipped in, uninvited, and painted and wrote us. Red arose as a blush or a stain seeping amongst us that became referenced obliquely by material objects, metaphors and fairytales. The stain spread, became noticeable through our weekend together and beyond it, creating another (bright red artery) vein of connection to write with.

Red Inquiring book of artwork produces at Ammerdown writing retreat with Aninet members

Davina is a contributor to the book Collaborative Writing as Inquiry

This is a new and overdue contribution to the recently burgeoning literature on writing as a branch of qualitative inquiry. The book places a diversity of approaches to collaborative writing alongside each other, and explores these methods and the spaces between them as critical arts-based inquiry practices within the social sciences. It is not intended or written as any kind of a handbook, more of a scrapbook, containing summative and rich prologues to each section, and substantive chapters (some adapted from work previously published in international peer-reviewed journals), fragments and snippets of ‘writing in progress’, as well as more extensive excursions into a range of approaches to writing collaboratively, including: collective biography; call and response (to people, to landscapes and to ‘what happens’ in the writing spaces); ‘take three words’; poetic writing; and writing in scholarly communities and/or on retreat. This book illuminates, investigates and interrogates these emergent spaces, particularly as a critical gesture towards the individualised, market-driven agendas and neo-liberal practices of the contemporary academy.