Against the backdrop of the current popularity of the concept of narrative in the social sciences the authors analyse the uses of narrative analysis in empirical social research and provide a unifying frame based on Paul Ricoeur‘s notion of narrative mimesis. To begin they situate ‘narrative’ in the context of the social research tradition. Using both a simple and an elaborated deﬁnition of narrative they outline the main approaches to narrative analysis relevant to sociology and categorize them as structuralist, hermeneutic, or interactionist. The crux of the article is a discussion of Ricoeur’s integrative model of narrative as threefold mimesis and its proposed methodological application in sociological narrative research. The authors argue that Ricoeur’s model obviates undesirable analytical simpliﬁcations and encourages research that captures all the substantial aspects of narrative, including the producer (the narrator) and the recipient (the listener or reader).