Diaconia (Sep 2021)

Is it Different?

  • Kaia S. Rønsdal

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 12, no. 1
pp. 79 – 93


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Is diaconia research different from other research? Does it have implications that the research takes place within the field of diaconia? What are the methodological reflections of the concept of diaconia regarding research? The practice of diaconia claims to be something particular, and, furthermore, diaconal action claims to need to be nurtured by the confession of God. The discussion in this article has as its starting point that these claims can have implications for how researchers of diaconia approach the fields of these practices and actions. This article explores the topic using the motion picture Kitchen Stories (2003) as both starting point and case for discussion. It discusses and reflects on various approaches to the narrative. Whether the title question concerning difference is answerable or not, and possibly what the answers may be, is not for his article to conclude. The aim is not to find distinctive marks of diaconia in methodology and research ethics, but rather to explore ways of centering everyday life in this research. This is illustrated and emphasized in the last part of the article, which points out transgressive moments in the narrative of the movie that may be of theological significance. If diaconia research is indeed different, this approach is one means of exploring what this may mean.