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

Neil Carey*, Nicola Fairchild, Carol A. Taylor, Mirka Koro, Constanse Elmenhorst, Angelo Benozzo

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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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 (Manning, 2016) 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 posthumanist and new material feminist thinking.
Original languageEnglish
JournalQualitative Research
Publication statusAccepted for publication - 8 Feb 2021


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


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