Across the social sciences, unsettlement and contestation permeate discussion of what it means to do inquiry. For much of the 20th century, field-based “paradigms”1 have been articulated and developed. Rooted in the research traditions of interpretive sociology and anthropology, such alternative practices of social research focus on the overriding importance of meaning making and context in human experiencing (Mishler, 1979). Over the last two decades, advocacy approaches to research that are openly value based have added their voices to this methodological ferment. For example, “critical ethnography”of education is constructed out of interpretivist anthropology and sociology as well as neo-Marxist and feminist theory (Anderson, 1989). Making an epistemological break with the positivist insistence on objectivity, “openly ideological” research argues that nothing is outside ideology, most certainly the production of social knowledge (Lather, 1986a, 1986b). As the concept of “disinterested knowledge” implodes and collapses inward, social inquiry becomes, in my present favorite definition of science, a much-contested cultural space, a site of the surfacing of what it has historically repressed (Hutcheon, 1988, p. 74).