Volume 5, No. 3, Art. 22 – September 2004

"Research is Hard Work, it's Always a bit Suffering. Therefore, on the Other Side Research Should be Fun"

Anselm Strauss in Conversation With
Heiner Legewie and Barbara Schervier-Legewie

Abstract: In an interview from 1994 the sociologist Anselm STRAUSS describes his intellectual biography, influenced by American pragmatism, and his development as well as his influence on the interactionistic sociology from 1940s to 1990s. Some of the central points include the development of the methodology of grounded theory, his research in the sociology of work, organization, and health and his theory of action. In conclusion, in his personal life balance, his emancipatory engagement as an American liberal and his passion for the exploration of existential challenges of human being like dying, "madness," and chronic suffering are highlighted.

In the appendix the interview is completed by a memo of Anselm's work as a research supervisor and by the original sound track of the interview, which in comparison to the published version is much more detailed.

Key words: Anselm Strauss, intellectual biography, history of science, interactionism, Grounded Theory, sociology of work, organization, and health, theory of action, balance of life

Table of Contents

The Audio File:

1. How One Becomes a Social Scientist (6:12 Min)

mp3 (6MB)

2. Chicago and Pragmatism (7:05 Min)

mp3 (6,8MB)

3. Sociology and Social Psychology (14:01 Min)

mp3 (13,5MB)

4. Interaction and Structure (1:34 Min)

mp3 (1,5MB)

5. Field Research (2:27 Min)

mp3 (2,4MB)

6. Grounded Theory (2:36 Min)

mp3 (2,5MB)

7. Teaching of the Method (24:31 Min)

mp3 (23,5MB)

8. More Recent Work (7:32 Min)

mp3 (7,2MB)

9. Personal Balance (7:16 Min)

mp3 (7MB)

Appendix: Anselm Strauss as a Research Supervisor







Becker, Howard S.; Geer, Blanche.; Hughes, Everett C. & Strauss, Anselm L. (1961). Boys in White, Student Culture in Medical School. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Corbin, Juliet & Strauss, Anselm L. (1988). Unending Work and Care: Managing Chronic Illness at Home. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Dewey, John (1922). Human Nature and Conduct: New York: Modern Library.

Fagerhaugh, Shizuko & Strauss, Anselm L. (1977). The Politics of Pain Management. Menlo Park, CA: Addison Wesley.

Glaser, Barney G. (1978). Theoretical Sensitivity: Advances in the Methodology of Grounded Theory. Mill Valley, Ca.: Sociology Press.

Glaser, Barney G. & Strauss, Anselm L. (1967). The Discovery of Grounded Theory. Chicago: Aldine; London: Weidenfeld and Nicholson.

Lindesmith, Alfred R. & Strauss, Anselm L. (Eds.) (1949). Social Psychology. New York: Dryden.

Mead, Herbert G. (1934). Mind, Self and Society. From the Standpoint of a Social Behaviorist. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.

Strauss, Anselm L. (1959). Mirrors and Masks – The Search for Identity.

Strauss, Anselm L. (1978). Negotiations: Varieties, Processes, Contexts, and Social Order. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Strauss, Anselm L. (1987). Qualitative Analysis for Social Scientists. Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press.

Strauss, Anselm L. (1993). Continual Permutations of Action. NY: Aldine de Gruyter.

Strauss, Anselm L. (1995). Identity, Biography, History, and Symbolic Representations. Social Psychology Quarterly, 58 (1), 4-12.

Strauss, Anselm L. & Corbin, Juliet (1988). Shaping a New Health Care System: The Explosion of Chronic Illness as a Catalyst for Change. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Strauss, Anselm L. & Corbin, Juliet (1990). Basics of Qualitative Research: Grounded Theory Procedures and Techniques. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.

Strauss, Anselm L. & Glaser, Barney G. (1965). Awareness of Dying. Chicago: Aldine.

Strauss, Anselm L. & Glaser, Barney G. (Eds.) (1975). Chronic Illness and the Quality of Life. St. Louis: C.V. Mosby.

Strauss, Anselm L.; Fagerhaugh, Shizuko; Suczek, Barbara & Wiener, Carolyn (1985). The Social Organization of Medical Work. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Strauss, L. Anselm, Schatzman, Leonard, Bucher, Rue, Ehrlich, Danuta & Sabshin, Mel (1964). Psychiatric Ideologies and Institutions. Glencoe, IL: The Free Press.

Strübing, Jörg (2002). Pragmatische Heuristik. Interaktionistische Beiträge zur Erforschung von Technik und Wissenschaft als Arbeit. Habilitationsschrift Berlin: Freie Universität. (To be published 1/2005: "Wissen und Technik. Die Perspektive des pragmatistischen Interaktionismus". Frankfurt: Campus Verlag).

Strübing, Jörg (2004). Grounded Theory. Zur sozialtheoretischen und epistemologischen Fundierung des Verfahrens der empirisch begründeten Theoriebildung. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag.

Thomas, William I. & Znaniecki, Florian (1926). The Polish Peasant in Europe and America. New York: Knopf.




Prof. em. Dr. med. Dr. phil. Heiner Legewie

Potsdamer Str. 35
12205 Berlin, Germany

E-mail: Legewie@ztg.tu-berlin.de
URL: http://www.tu-berlin.de/fak8/ifg/psychologie/legewie/




Barbara Schervier-Legewie

Potsdamer Str. 35
12205 Berlin, Germany

E-mail: bschervier@yahoo.de
URL: http://www.schervier.de/


Legewie, Heiner & Schervier-Legewie, Barbara (2004). "Research is Hard Work, it's Always a bit Suffering. Therefore on the Other Side it Should be Fun." Anselm Strauss in Conversation With Heiner Legewie and Barbara Schervier-Legewie. Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung / Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 5(3), Art. 22, http://nbn-resolving.de/urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs0403222.

Copyright (c) 2004 Heiner Legewie, Barbara Schervier-Legewie

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