Sanja Grbić,University of Belgrade, Faculty of Philosophy, Department of Psychology, Serbia

Selena Vračar, Singidunum University, Faculty of Media and Communications, Department of Psychology, Serbia


Individualistic orientation in psychology and a reliance on statistical analysis contributed to the lack of methodological resources for empirical research of processual and relational phenomena. Qualitative methods helped, but what is still omitted are the studies of interaction, which would explore the in-vivo microgenetic process of individual identity co-construction in social interaction. Thus, sociocultural psychologists’ assumptions regarding identity development were impossible to investigate, and this state was reproduced in the “Big story” narrative approach. The solution offers the “Small story” approach, utilising the methods of neighbouring disciplines, which we further adapted for psychology. This workshop aims to present a methodological framework consisting of 3 levels of interaction analysis, suitable for empirically exploring the process of reality and identity co-construction. In the first part of the workshop, participants will be acquainted with the analytical levels 1 and 2 – conversation and discourse analysis, which involves mapping the discursive strategies that social actors use to demonstrate affiliation and to impose their own version of reality. In the second part, we continue with the analytical level 3 – positioning analysis and membership categorization analysis, aimed at determining which identity positions are made available by the strategies employed and a reality version constructed. Participants will, first in pairs, and then through reflective exchange with the rest of the group, thoroughly practise the application of these analytical resources on a plethora of concrete examples. Finally, there will be a demonstration on how to integrate interaction analysis with the “Big story” narrative analysis, focusing on how social actors co-construct a shared narrative about a relevant event, while at the same time maintaining an individual version, not necessarily aligned with the shared one. We will discuss the suitability of the presented methodological framework for psychological research and the theoretical implications of the findings for the understanding of individual identity.

Keywords: narrative psychology, identity co-construction, qualitative methodology, discourse analysis, positioning analysis

Duration: 90 minutes

The number of participants is limited. Registration is mandatory and is done by filling out the form: The deadline for registration is Thursday (September 28th) at 3:00 PM.

The workshop will take place on Friday, starting at 11:30, in room 306. It will also be possible to participate online: